Stevie Nicks – BST Hyde Park – 09.07.17
Barclaycard’s British Summertime sometimes seems to be the one week of the year that Londoner’s don’t absolutely despise each other. Rather than get glared at for getting on the train first at Marble Arch, you get a smile and a “Hello” (albeit accompanied by cider breath). We covered this year’s line up in an earlier article, highlighting that the support artists themselves could headline (You can see that here). Justin who? Tom Petty and the what? For me, this year was all about Blondie, Elbow, and above all else, Stevie Nicks.
The moment she appears on stage looking a little like she did in American Horror Story: Coven, all in black with sunglasses covering her face, the fans are screaming like foxes having sex (If you haven’t heard it, google it). The first two songs, Gold and Braid and If Anyone Falls, were perhaps tailored to the Stevie fan over the Fleetwood Mac fan. But just hearing her timeless, unchanged, voice is enough for me (not in a creepy way).
But then she does the musical equivalent of hitting a baseball out of the park and treats us to Gypsy. I had initially hoped that she’d play the re-recorded acoustic version that she’s done for the new Netflix TV show that shares it’s name with the song, but the moment I hear it in it’s original glory, that hope took a back seat and hung it’s head in shame. The rest of the crowd apparently agrees as it erupts into a drunken, tuneless sing-a-long.
A short while later, Ms Nicks disappears from stage and re-emerges in a long white coat with fur at the collar and sleeves. The sort of coat a gold digger would wear while answering the door to the police who have come to investigate her husband’s mysterious death. She introduces the next song as being inspired by Bella and Edward in Twilight, which admittedly gets a snigger from the very British crowd who have been over the dysfunctional love story for quite some time. It’s 50 Shades of Grey that wets our knickers nowadays, Stevie! But, still, the song (Moonlight (A Vampires Dream)) is quite pretty as she sings it accompanied by a pianist. That’s pi-an-ist.
After Stand Back she runs straight into Gold Dust Woman, delighting the Fleetwood fans who seem to dominate the audience like floral wallpaper dominates a pensioner’s living room. Next up are another two of Stevie’s songs; Wild Heart & Bella Donna. The former has more of a rock and roll feel, and the latter more of a rock power ballad. It’s a unity of soft and rugged. I can’t think of a poetic example, but think of it like a musical kitchen sponge.
Edge of Seventeen is next and is definitely solo Stevie’s most well known hit. The version she plays in Hyde Park seems to go on forever, but no-one is complaining. You can’t have too much of a good thing. Though with the opening guitar riff I do notice a few youngsters thinking she’s about to cover Destiny’s Childs‘ Bootylicious. Now that I would like to see.
To conclude she brings some people to tears with Rhiannon and finally Landslide. Fun fact: Stevie claims to have never played a show where she didn’t sing Rhiannon. And too right, it’s bloody perfect! Landslide was the first Fleetwood Mac song I ever remember hearing so it strikes a particular chord for me and makes me fall in love with Stevie Nicks all over again. (Again, not in a creepy way).
I know that a lot of people might say, “I’ll just wait until Fleetwood Mac tour. Why would I want to see her solo?”, but you must do everything in your power to convince them otherwise. Seeing her solo made her more vulnerable and more charming. I mean, don’t get me wrong, if rumours of a Mac tour come to fruition I will sell my own mother for a ticket. But seeing her solo was a special experience that I’d love to do again, and again, and again.
Not in a creepy way.