Stevie's interview with Gavin Martin (2003)
Subject: Stevie Nicks
When did it air? 2003
[Extracts from this raw interview were used in a Daily Express article in Nov. 2003. Read it here.]
Stevie: Oh Sulamith, stop!
Other: This is Gavin.
Stevie: Hi, Gavin. How are you?
Gavin: How are ya doin'?
Stevie: Nice to meet you.
Gavin: Nice to meet you.
Stevie: This is my big German Shepherd right here.
Stevie: Totally on patrol here.
Other: Gavin said she was giving him the eye.
Stevie: Oh, yeah. She's not exactly sure what's going on here.
Other: You okay? You need anything?
Stevie: You know what, I really need something cold to drink with ice in it.
Other: Cold with ice. Okay.
Stevie: Yeah. Cos it's still kinda warm still in here.
Other: I don't know what you have in here, but I can get you -
Stevie: That may be the tiniest ice carrier in the world. That we could never figure out how to open.
Gavin: Was it hard for you to decide to do a Mac tour after your solo thing, cos it was quite successful? Or were you very keen to get back into Fleetwood Mac?
Stevie: Well, it was really planned before I even left on the Trouble In Shangri-La tour, so I knew, I knew exactly what I was getting into. I knew that I was going to have to scurry out there, do what I could for Trouble In Shangri-La, and then - Cos they went - I left on the 4th July 2001 and they rented the house in Bel Air the 1st of July.
Stevie: So I started my tour the day they started recording. So I was fully aware that I needed to do my thing and get home. And I have done that many times with Fleetwood Mac so, you know. When I did Bella Donna, I only did twelve shows. Six weeks of shows. Twelve shows. And in different cities right across the country. And I went right home and, y'know, ran across town to get to the Fleetwood Mac studio to begin Mirage.
Gavin: Do you make your songs differently writing for Fleetwood Mac or if you're writing for your solo -
Stevie: No, I don't, no. I don't really write for - Sometimes when I'm done with a song, it'll kinda occur to me, 'This could be, maybe this is a better Fleetwood Mac song.' But not often.
Gavin: Is there a competitive element in Fleetwood Mac? Say, um, best or better than Lindsey's song.
Stevie: Uh, I don't think you'd really look at it as competitive, but I think that we are all - how do I explain this - cos it's not competitive. But we are all competitive. I mean, does that make any sense? Not really. Um, when you're in a band, you don't really, you want to keep that competitive thing down as much as possible, because you're in a band. If you're going to be in a band, you need to be able to make compromises, you need to really understand the other people who are working and writing with you, and you need to, you need to, you're a part of a group. When you're in your solo work, you're not a part of a group and you make all the decisions. Now that's really good but then you're not in a band. And of course being in a band is really more fun.
Gavin: When you and Lindsey first met, did you never write together?
Gavin: Why did that - I mean, it seems odd that -
Stevie: I don't know why. Um, I was just telling the last lady [that] I'm not - When I first wrote my first song, which was - I was fifteen-and-a-half - just a little love song. I'd fallen - My first love, y'know, and he'd totally dumped me and I was totally miserable, and my Mom and Dad gave me a guitar. And my Grandfather had taught me like, y'know, four or five chords that I'd been playing for many years. I sat down and I just wrote this song, y'know. 'Well, I've loved and I've lost and I'm sad but not blue / I once loved a boy who was wonderful and true / But he loved another before he loved me / And I knew he still wanted her, it was easy to see.' So that was my first song, right. And I wrote it all by myself, you know.
Gavin: Was Lindsey love on the rebound from the first love? Was he -
Stevie: Oh, no, no, no. This was like fifteen-and-a-half. This was long before Lindsey. So this was like in my sophomore year in high school in Los Angeles.
Stevie: I hadn't even moved to San Francisco where Lindsey lived. My family got transferred to San Francisco, um, like a week after my senior year began. So I didn't even meet Lindsey until almost the end of my senior year.
Gavin: So was it a musical relationship before it was a romantic relationship?
Stevie: Oh yeah. And when I first met Lindsey in 1966, the year that - and he's a year younger so he was a junior and I was a senior. I met him one time in some high school function, and then I didn't hear or see from him again until two years later when the drummer in his rock'n'roll band called me and asked me if I had any interest in coming and being in the band. And this being that - When I had met Lindsey in 1966, uh, we had sang a song together. So they had remembered that. You know, they pulled it out of their hat and called me. Um, if it hadn't had been a rock'n'roll band, I might not even have been a rock'n'roll singer. I might've ended up being a country singer. Because I was a little bit more country at that point. Um, so by the time my songs started getting used in the band, it was almost the end of our period of having a band in San Francisco, which was '68, '69, and '70.
Stevie: So I was pretty much on my way to being a very solitary songwriter when I met Lindsey.
Gavin: Okay, okay. And, um, as far as your relationship was concerned, I mean, it came together through music, but -
Stevie: Oh, so that was what I was going to tell you. So when I went into the band, into Fritz, Lindsey was going with somebody I actually knew and was pretty good friends with. Her name was Sally. And I was going with my boyfriend, David. And this was - So for three years in the band, we were both with somebody else. So, you know, when you're in a band and you travel and you work every weekend and you practice every single day, so we were just friends for a long, long time. And then the only reason - and he will tell you this too - that probably we ever actually got together was because we went to Los Angeles as a band - the five of us - and we played for a showcase. And the record industry was not at all interested in the other three. They were only interested in Lindsey and I. So we had to go back to San Francisco and fire these very close friends of mine for three years but Lindsey for all through high school. I mean, these were his dear friends. We had to fire them. That was a huge drag. And in that sad, sorrowful situation where we had to let these three people go, that's when Lindsey and I started going out.
Gavin: Right. But was it getting involved in Fleetwood Mac that pulled you apart, or would you have fallen apart anyway? Or is that hypothetical?
Stevie: That's hypothetical. You know, if we never moved from San Francisco, if we had stayed up there, it's very possible [that] Lindsey and I would've been married and would've been together forever. It's very possible. No way to know.
Gavin: Yeah. And what was the problem in your relationship? I mean, what was, what were the things that so pulled you apart? Love.
Stevie: Yeah, and it's just very hard to be in the public eye and have everybody watching you all the time and everything you do is news. It's not like - Like I said, if we had stayed in San Francisco, I mean, cos we had a great relationship. And I was very much the care-taker in that relationship, and I LOVED taking care of him. And I loved taking care of our house and, you know, all the things that women do when they love a man. You know, I washed his jeans and embroidered stupid moons and stars on the bottom of them, you know. I made sure that HE was perfect, you know. I mean, I loved being that person in our relationship. The day we joined Fleetwood Mac, that all changed. Because we were famous. And we were rich. And the world really, the world really got in the way.
Gavin: Did you battle to keep hold of him, or - I mean, I got the impression from what I've read about the relationship was that really you went away from him.
Stevie: Well, I did go away from him.
Gavin: Left him quite torn up.
Stevie: And it did. And it probably wouldn't have left him near so torn up if we hadn't had been in a band together. Because when people break up, you know, you don't go and have breakfast with that person the next morning. In a hotel. And that's what we had to do. And, y'know, I was very, very careful to never, y'know, I didn't really go out with anybody, I didn't bring anybody on the road, I didn't - I knew how sensitive he was about the whole situation so I didn't ever, ever cause him any more pain than had already been caused. So I was really careful to - It's like, you know, he probably thought I never went out with anybody again cos he never saw me with anybody.
Gavin: What about your songs? Would you be sensitive or cautious about what effect they might have on him?
Stevie: Yes. Yes. Very much. Always careful what I wrote. And was he a great sense of something to write about? Yes, he was. But I was very coded in how I would write.
Gavin: Is he still? I mean, in these new songs, are you writing about Lindsey?
Stevie: Well, there are a couple. Uh, Thrown Down is written about Lindsey. Not just Lindsey but Lindsey and Fleetwood Mac in an odd sort of around-the-world way.
Gavin: Sure. Well, that's quite a showcase. 'You're not like other people, you do what you want to.'
Stevie: Now see, THAT verse was just written like a couple of months ago. Because I didn't have a second verse for Thrown Down. And the song was completely recorded and what I did was I went back into - I have a huge volume of poetry that a friend of mine, over the past five, six, seven years, has gone through all my journals and pulled out the poetry out of the journal. And so I came upon this poem that is that verse. Excuse me. And I said, 'Well, you know.' And I'm pretty sure this was written about Lindsey. I'm not sure sure, but I'm pretty sure it was. Um, cos it was very old. And I thought, 'Well, this is great because this really does just fit perfectly into what's happening now.' Because he's not like anybody else and he does do what he wants to. Um.
Gavin: In terms of life or music. I mean -
Stevie: You know, life and music. Um, he's - But it's me too. We both do what we want to. We're both very - We're kind of both very solo people, and even though Lindsey's married and has children, we're still pretty much loners, both of us. And, uh, so that's, I don't know how to exactly finish where we're at on that question, but in answer to your question, yes, some of the things I write DEFINITELY tend to be about Lindsey and I. And yet some of the things that I write aren't about Lindsey. And some of the things I write aren't about anybody; they're just made-up, magical things in my head, you know. Or I get one little sentence that's about somebody, and then I have to basically make up the rest of it, you know, because then it isn't really about, you know, I got an idea from somebody but I didn't get a whole song from somebody.
Gavin: How was it working in the studio with Lindsey on these new songs? This is the first time, what, that you've worked in the studio with new stuff for, what, a decade or more.
Stevie: It was great. It was, uh, it was pretty dreamy. The first six months was very dreamy. Um, because I came right from Trouble In Shangri-La, and that was not dreamy. That was 9/11 out there and it was horrendous. So to come from that mess back into a house, a home in Bel Air, with nobody but me, Mick, John and Lindsey and the tech, Ray Lindsay, it was very, it was very kinda calming. And then, of course, we got started February 1st. Then by the time we got to the middle of summer then the soup was all starting to heat up a little bit. You know, there was a lot of stuff going on at that point. The songs were starting to be done and the record was starting to come together. And so then it wasn't quite so dreamy anymore. It was more, then we were really working on a record. So it was nice that there was that couple of months transition period for us, especially for me, to come out of a situation that was very difficult for me. Because I stayed out on the road. I was in New York when it happened. I had just flown in. I was there for a couple of hours. I'd just gotten to my hotel and unpacked everything and gone to bed at 7.30 and BANG the world blew up. Um, our shows were all cancelled due to acts of war, which has not happened since Pearl Harbor, you know, that shows were actually canceled due to an act of war. And I had to stay in New York for three days, which was very amazing. Because we didn't want to cancel anything until the actual Radio City Music Hall, The Today Show - Until they canceled, we were going to play if they wanted us to. And from that day on it was just the most difficult thing I've ever done. So to finally get home in December - It took that long to actually make up all those shows and tie up the odd ends and pieces of Trouble In Shangri-La, to go home and go back into this really lovely home in Bel Air and start working on music was a very wonderful thing.
Gavin: But once you started, when you described the soup 'heating up', was there a tension in the studio between you and Lindsey? I mean, quite often it must've just been you two in the studio, um, how -
Stevie: Well, there's - Quite often it was all four of us, too.
Stevie: Um, the way that we recorded was was that Lindsey would pretty much get there at nine. If we were tracking, we would start to track at about like two. Um, and then we would track for a couple of hours, and then the boys would probably go home and I might stay and then we'd work for another couple of hours. But Lindsey really put in a good solid six hours every day more than anybody else did. So he really deserves a medal for this because he did a whole lot more work than anybody else did.
Gavin: He doesn't think you've thanked him enough.
Stevie: Did he say that to you?!
Gavin: Um, well not quite, but he did say something to that effect. It was earlier, so *mumbles* I'd seen a piece where you'd been interviewed and you said it was a bit like the cast of Big Brother. Um, if you'd have had a chance, you would've voted him out and if he'd have had a chance, he would've you out.
Stevie: Oh my god. Did he - I mean, all I can say - and I mean, whatever, that's fine whatever the world is thinking - but, in fact, I'm telling ya that he got there at nine every morning and worked his butt off. I came in at two. I stayed until seven. Many nights he stayed later. So I give him all the credit in the world. He took my little skeleton songs - and that's what they are when I give them to you, it's like - That's what, when we said we don't write together, we don't write together because we both are very frozen in our ways of writing. We write our songs by ourself at our own house. That's the way it was in 1971, so that's not changed. And then I, you know, I get a cassette and I write my little song and I put it on the thing and then I give it to him. And then he runs with that. And then he goes and spends that extra six hours a day - where I'm not even there - putting, trying different stuff, playing different parts, doing singing parts. Um -
Gavin: What do you think of his talent? Is it an immense talent, do you think?
Stevie: It's an immense talent.
Gavin: Do you think it's one of the greatest things in pop?
Stevie: Abso - I think that he is a craftsman beyond belief. And, you know, I knew that the first day that I met him. I knew that that's who he was. And you know what? We never like - The fact that we didn't write together, we never like - It was not ever like a bummer. It was just the way it was. And it was fine with him that I wrote my own songs. He never came in and said, "You know what, I think you should change these words to - I don't like the words in this line." He never in all the years I've known him was ever -
Gavin: He accepted them as yours.
Stevie: Yes. And vice versa with me. When Lindsey plays me a song, it's like, I love it because it's his. I love it because it's what he needs to say. And that's how he feels about my songs. And we never, ever have ever had problems with that. That's always been a really great thing. I think maybe one time in our whole life we actually tried to write to song together and we both just ended up going, "You know what, this isn't working." Because we both don't want to change our words. Once they're down, they're in stone. And neither of us wants to go back and start over and try to make something else out of a song.
Gavin: How was it for you in a quite masculine environment or, I dunno, maybe Lindsey's got feminine qualities or you've got masculine qualities, but how was it for you in a band where, I mean, sort of competitive in a way but was it a battle for you? Maybe - Of all the people that took cocaine, maybe you had the most problems with it. Would that be true? Would that be a function of trying to keep up with the lads or the boys?
Stevie: Well, no.
Stevie: Um, I think we all did a whole bunch. It was pretty much, you know - I think that probably Lindsey did the least.
Stevie: Yeah, he did. He - I don't think that we would have even put him in the bag of being a cocaine addict. I think he did it once in a while but I think that Lindsey just like had a shot of scotch. Um, it was Christine and me and Mick who did the cocaine. And, um, I'm sorry, now where was that leading us?
Gavin: I just wondered, did you - I mean, you've answered the question in actual fact. But how badly damaged were you from it? Um, cocaine.
Stevie: Well, I think I was really badly damaged. I think I was really lucky to, you know, have made the decision - You know, when it comes to stuff like that, I think you get up one morning and you go, "Okay, I can continue to do this drug and I'll be dead in a year, or I can stop doing this drug and write songs and have a great musical life and a good life until I'm ninety." And one day that's what I did. I got up and I said, "Oh, I can't do this anymore."
Gavin: Was it as simple as that, or was it -
Stevie: It was pretty simple. Cos I was pretty sick.
Gavin: Detoxing, was that -
Stevie: Oh. Well, that was - You know, that was twenty-eight days. And that's not that long. I went in on the first day and I left on the twenty-eighth, and I think what happened with me was that when I walked through the halls of Betty Ford, I said, "Oh, it's over. I'm never going back to this." And I never did. I've never said it since I got out of Betty Ford. I have never seen cocaine.
Gavin: Was it a major part of your life then?
Stevie: It was a major part of my life.
Gavin: And what sort of filled the vacuum? How'd you -
Stevie: Well, you know what, it's like, it's like any other drug. I mean, I stopped smoking cigarettes five years ago. I smoked three packs a day for thirteen years. Now when you're carrying around a burning fire stick, you really can't do much else. That's all - You don't know this until you stop, but you really can't do anything else but smoke. Um, when I stopped smoking, you know, six months went by and I don't miss it, I love not smoking, I love the fact that my hair doesn't smell like smoke, I love the fact that my house and my clothes don't smell like smoke. It was like just over for me. Um, but I could never have another cigarette. I could never play with it, you know. I could never then go back and be recreational. The same way with cocaine. I could never - I thought everybody else in the world stopped when I stopped because I never saw it again. And now I'm coming to know now that it's way back.
Gavin: What about your relationship with Mick? Was that a cocaine-induced or - How did it come together with Mick?
Stevie: Well, actually, and Mick and I will laughingly tell you that it was not cocaine-induced. It was just, uh, a big party one night. And everybody was very drunk. *laughs* And it was just a mistake. And it was a bad mistake and, you know, we knew we were doomed, and we can really laugh about it now. Because we knew we were doomed that day, you know, and we also knew that we would break up the band. So from the day it started, it started to end. And end because we wanted it to end, because neither of us was going to risk Fleetwood Mac.
Gavin: Yeah, yeah. Was - Did you ever have to go into psychiatric treatment, with al the problems that would've been associated with cocaine abuse, was that part of what happened - I mean, you've got this sort of witchery sort of image with Rhiannon; do things like that give you strength if you -
Stevie: Oh, no, no, no, no. Totally theatric, you know. Rhiannon, I had no idea that Rhiannon was a mythological character from the Welsh Mabinogion when I wrote the song. I just thought it was a really beautiful Welsh name that I had come upon in a book. So, no, and the fact that I wore black was for one reason and one reason alone. Why was that? Because you look thinner in black. So that was why I wore black. And then, of course, all of a sudden I was a witch and, you know, then it was fun for awhile. And then it wasn't fun anymore. And then it was starting to get really nasty mail and really unpleasant people saying really unpleasant things, and making stuff I was doing onstage into these really witch chants and calls, which it was not. And for about two years, I stopped wearing black and wore nothing but apricot colors. Light green, light apricot, light blue, pink, and then, of course, at the end of two years when I was really tired of pink and green, I went back to black. So then I went, 'Well, if you guys - You gotta get over it.' The world's gotta get over it. I'm not a witch and I wear black because it makes me look thinner.
Gavin: You had breast implants, plastic surgery?
Stevie: I did. But they're gone.
Gavin: They're gone. And would be -
Stevie: They made me very sick.
Gavin: Is that something you'd advise -
Gavin: - against?
Stevie: I would absolutely advise them against it. Unless you just know that right now, as soon as you put them in, start a savings account that says 'Savings Account for when Breast Implants Break and Make Me Really Sick.' Because insurance doesn't really wanna cover that kind of thing so. When they - They will backfire on you. They backfire on everybody. Um, then you have to have them taken out and then you're scarred and then you have to make a decision whether you put more in so you can have more of that silicone poisoning in you. And then you have to have everything rebuilt. It's a whole nightmare.
Gavin: Have you ever met Pamela Anderson?
Stevie: Pamela Anderson is probably going to be so sorry when she's sixty that she has done this. She is gonna do interviews all over the world to tell people what a bad idea it was.
Gavin: There's so many of them. I mean, famous women, not-famous women -
Stevie: It's - Yeah. And, you know, moms and -
Gavin: What do you think when you see that? I mean, -
Stevie: I think it is so unattractive.
Gavin: But do you think is it like society driving people to do this or is it sort of -
Stevie: It drove me to do it. Absolutely. Cos I did it in 1976. So I'd only been in Fleetwood Mac one year. I did it in December - Well, no. Oh, yeah. 1975 we joined, 1976 was we were going into Rumours and coming off the Fleetwood Mac Fleetwood Mac tour. I did it in December. Um, I did it for one reason and that was because, you know, everybody had - I had always thought my hips were too big and I had no chest and, you know, so it was going to look better onstage. That was it. That was the whole reason. It wasn't because I felt I needed to have big, huge boobs. I just thought it would look better up there on the stage. I'd be more - what's the word - I'd be more balanced.
Gavin: Yeah, yeah.
Stevie: So that was my only reason. And I'll tell you something. I had terrible balance with the Epstein-Barr syndrome. When I had them taken out, I was in bed off and on for a year. I had to go to the doctor three times a week, have acupuncture, have IVs, you know, to clean the silicone out of my body. It was awful. It was awful.
Gavin: And, um, you think that, you know, women are still being tricked into doing that, or being hoodwinked by society?
Stevie: I think that, for some reason, all girls think they need to have bigger boobs. And the unfortunate part of that is that the women who really have the great boobs that are really naturally had a little waist and a large chest, you know, those few women that there are, it's like everybody has really big boobs so who cares? I mean, to me, it gets to the point where there's a room full of women, [and] every single woman has really big boobs and then it's like, 'Wow. This isn't a big deal, is it.' Because everybody looks the same. You know. To me. And that's just me, you know. Maybe - And I can't get mad at all these people because I did it too. So, you know, it's like - But if people had any idea on the other end what you have to go through, they wouldn't do it.
Gavin: Do you regret not having had children?
Gavin: What do you think when you see Lindsey's got kids? Do you think that it's easier for a man late in life to have kids than it is for a woman?
Stevie: Yeah. I do. Definitely.
Gavin: Do you not feel slightly jealous -
Stevie: No. Because, um, I wanted to do what I do. And I am very - I would've been a very jealous mom if I'd have had to turn my kids over to nannies. The first time I had walked in and my baby girl ran across to some other woman, that would've been it. So I knew that. And I knew I would've quit doing - I would have had to take a five year, you know, sabbatical. And, um, I didn't want to take a five year sabbatical. I didn't want to give up my career.
Gavin: What do you think that people like Madonna are able to have kids and maintain a career. How do you think she -
Stevie: She's a stronger woman than me.
Stevie: She must be. Because, uh, I mean, you know, but she didn't do it in - She didn't do it in the beginning, you know. She did it - And my babies would've been, you know, twenty by now, you know. So she kind of waited. Madonna waited until, you know, she was forty. Or almost, you know. So she had a big, long career before that happened. I wouldn't have wanted to have kids after forty because I think that then you're starting to ask for trouble at that point, so when I would've had children, it would've been when I was in my thirties.
Gavin: Are you in a relationship now?
Gavin: No. Do you still live with three other women -
Stevie: No. I live all by myself in a beautiful house on a cliff by the ocean.
Gavin: And are you more content now than you've ever been? Are -
Stevie: Yeah. I'm very - I'm happy now. And I love being single, I really do. I'm really - Like I said about Lindsey and I both, and even though he's married, but we are very much loner people. And, uh, we are kind of happy being by ourselves, which, I mean, I don't really, you know, he's in a marriage so I don't really, I can't really speak about that because I don't know anything about that, but I just know that for myself - And again, you're right, being a father you don't have to quit. You don't have to get up with the baby every morning. You don't have to, you know. So it's different. Um, now I find that I - There's so many things I wanna do, you know. I want to write children's stories. I have some of these children's stories already written. I want to write a book. I want to do an animated film version of Rhiannon. I want to do a blues record. I want to do a record of old standards. I want to do so many things. And I can't even start those things until this part's over.
Gavin: And are you looking forward to this tour or are you not? Is there a certain amount of trepidation?
Stevie: Um, no, I'm really looking forward to it. Because I enjoy going onstage. That's my favorite part. My favorite part is not being in the studio. My favorite part is walking out on the stage and being an entertainer. Because that's really what I am mostly. I'm an entertainer. So when I'm too old to be an entertainer, then that's when I'll go into all those other things I just told you about.
Gavin: And how will you and Lindsey interact onstage? Have you been, uh, will there be theatricality in -
Stevie: See, that never goes away. That's just there. And we know that it stops when we go offstage. It begins when we go onstage. And it's really a lovely thing that we have that, because it makes it a lot of fun. And we get to yell at each other and, you know, argue out all the things we never argued out. We get to actually do it onstage and that's really fun. And it certainly makes for excitement for the audience and, in turn, excitement back for us.
Gavin: Is there ever any sort of been a heartbreak when you're hearing certain songs that were written - I mean, how do you feel when Go Your Own Way's being played? Is that -
Stevie: It takes me right back to when it all happened, it really does. You know, it takes me back to when we first broke up, which was when he wrote that song.
Gavin: I mean, are you still, in a way, on this record, playing out your relationship? In the songs, do you think? He wrote this song, Say Goodbye -
Gavin: And then Goodbye Baby ends the record. Is that your answer record to him?
Stevie: Well, no, to be perfectly honest, he actually arranged those. I said I would like to end the record with Goodbye Baby, because I thought it was a good closing song. Because we've always gone to - whether it was Songbird or, for me, Has Anyone Ever Written - more of a ballad at the end, which is a nice way, I think, to leave people. Um, and he wanted to put Say Goodbye To You right before it. And I felt that was a good idea. It was a nice pairing of those two songs.
Gavin: I think it gives a sense of closure.
Stevie: I think so. I do. I think it's a really nice - That's what people really remember, is when you get to the end of a record and the last two songs is what really makes the imprint on you.
Gavin: I mean, the song Illume 9/11, it sounds like another song about your and Lindsey's relationship. Obviously it's got the 9/11 thing in there - But how does that relate to 9/11?
Stevie: Well, it's written about the day it happened. It really is written about the day it happened, because that day was, you know, I went to bed at 7.30 and Karen came in - my assistant - and woke me up at 11. She actually let me sleep through the really horrible part, and, uh, came in and woke me up and said, 'Well, you're not going to believe this, so check this out.' And, uh, we were there for three days and we didn't leave until Thursday night, because like I told you, we had to wait to cancel everything. I saw - You know, it said in the song, it says, I'm alone now / With my thoughts / Of how we could make it / Of how we could get out / What we've been through / All of the trauma / The smell of Nag Champra / Shadow of a stranger / What I saw on this journey / I saw history go down / I cannot pretend / That the heartache falls away / It's just like a river / Ooh, it's never-ending / I cannot pretend / That the heartache falls away...' I cannot pretend to this day that the heartache goes away for that. I will never get over that. That song is not about Lindsey. That song is about 9/11. That song is about being in the city that was bombed. And being fifteen minutes away. And then staying out on the road until - My last show, I think, was at the end of September going into October. And going onstage in a big public place every night and being afraid.
Gavin: How do you feel - With the record coming out, the singles are out now - Peacekeeper - and your record starts with What's The World Coming To, and we're on the brink of a war.
Stevie: It just seems to have done that all on its own. It's like the records seem to follow suit to what's happening in the world. And Lindsey will be the first one to tell you that he's really not political, but somehow it did. It almost became a little bit about what's going on.
Gavin: How do you feel about America going to war?
Stevie: You know, before 9/11 happened, I was not political. And I can tell you that, really. I am so not political. And now, so I'm just starting to be political. So this is all new to me. Um, I honestly don't know. I really don't know. I try to watch enough of it to understand, you know, to be at least schooled on it and I honestly don't know. I, I, if I had a nineteen year old child, I might feel very, very differently. Um -
Gavin: Did you not know kids or were you too young to know kids that had to go to Vietnam?
Stevie: The Vietnam thing simply skimmed past me without me almost noticing it. Because I didn't know anybody that got drafted. I didn't know anybody that was killed. Somehow in my high school graduating class, nobody was involved, so I didn't - And I never watched the movies. I never watched Apocalypse Now or Full Metal Jacket or whatever it was. I never watched any of those movies because I was so horrified with the premise of being held prisoner in Vietnam that I just couldn't deal with it. So I blocked that out. And we were so in music then. We lived in our own little musical world, you know. And again, Lindsey wasn't political either, so that was not anything that we even talked about.
Gavin: Is it not odd with different - You've all got separate managers; is that an odd set-up to go out on the road with? Will it be -
Stevie: No, because they don't go. No, they don't go. They're not there. All the different managers and all that has a lot to do with, like, what's going on now, but once we leave, they all stay home. Once we go, it is not, you know, it's like we laughingly call it, you know, 'my camp' or 'Lindsey's camp', everybody's camp, but once we go, the camps are just disassembled and it becomes one camp, and that's Fleetwood Mac. So it seems complicated now but it stops being complicated once we leave this city.
Gavin: And will there be another record after this one, or can you see another Fleetwood Mac - I mean, you're got a lot of personal projects that you've outlined. Would you say that -
Stevie: You know what, it will just depend on how much fun I have on this tour. If I'm happy out there and I enjoy it and the shows are great and the record does well and the world seems to be happy with it, then I would say we will do another record. If I don't feel that, then I will absolutely go back to my own world.
Gavin: Do you feel in competition with other bands with this sorts of show? Cos you're like all getting on to a certain age and it's a different thing but Fleetwood Mac, really, I guess, compared to - Well, I guess the Stones were a generation on again but you've got a new record and it's as strong, it's a continuation of your body of work, it's a strong record. Um, you've actually got something - Do you feel yourself pushing the envelope the bit?
Stevie: You know what, no, I don't. And I mean, I hope this doesn't sound really conceited, but I feel that Fleetwood Mac only played for three months in 1997 and it was really quite glorious and it would have never stopped had it not been for Christine quitting. Cos she nailed it on the head and so she went home and said, "Well, I'm not doing this anymore. Ever again. I'm not ever going out on the road again."
Gavin: Why did she -
Stevie: She just didn't want to tour anymore.
Gavin: Did you feel bitter about it or -
Gavin: Or were you annoyed that she decided not to -
Stevie: Yeah. We knew like half way in. She pretty much made it really clear about a month and a half into the shows that she was not gonna -
Gavin: Did that annoy you?
Stevie: No, it wasn't annoying; it was just sad, you know. Because we were in this huge tour and it was like everything was going great and it was like Christine's going, "No. I can't do this anymore." She hated being on the road. She hated living in hotels. Chris is like, you know, she's all about her house and cooking and she's English, you know, she's like could have a cooking show, you know. Um, it just hit her very hard that she did not want to be a rockstar anymore. And she didn't want to do press anymore, she didn't want to talk about her life anymore, she just wanted to go home to London.
Gavin: Did you have differences with her in the course of the band?
Stevie: Oh, no. No. Chris and I have been pretty close-knit, like this. You know, I miss her every day. I miss her funny English humor and how hysterical she is and how she makes me laugh. Well, it's lonely without her for me. I'm very lonely without her. She was there from 1975 to 1997, and all of a sudden it's like she's just gone, you know. I just miss her terribly.
Gavin: No-one can take her place?
Stevie: And we tried everything we could do to change her mind. We all went with every argument you could possibly imagine. "We will build your kitchen on the road somewhere!", you know. "We will make it so that you will feel like you're home!" And she would have nothing of it. She was done. And you know when you look in somebody's eyes and you can just tell they're finished?
Gavin: But she, her departure would change the musical set-up quite dramatically.
Stevie: Yeah, so I mean, sometimes somebody has to go for that to happen. So, you know, it's just karma. And she kind of released us to go back and do something that we had always done.
Gavin: With her blessing.
Stevie: With her blessing. Oh, yeah. She was very happy about this. She was totally glad we're doing this.