The drugged-out music video Stevie Nicks finds hard to watch

By the middle of the 1970s, Fleetwood Mac was getting on in years, but their best was still to come. While searching for a replacement for the band’s founding guitarist, Peter Green, in 1974, drummer Mick Fleetwood stumbled upon Lindsey Buckingham. In 1972, the guitarist gained some recognition for himself by going on tour with the Everley Brothers and playing with his partner Stevie Nicks.

When asked whether he would like to become a member of Fleetwood Mac, Buckingham said yes but only if Nicks, his fiancée, could help out with songwriting and vocals. Fleetwood agreed, thinking that the band’s sound would benefit from a fresh vocalist. This turned out to be among the finest choices Fleetwood would ever make.

With the band’s self-titled 1975 album, Buckingham’s guitar prowess was revitalized, and Nicks’ ethereal vocal and lyrical talents helped the record become their most successful to date. Two years later, Rumours was released, solidifying this chart triumph and continuing to be Fleetwood Mac’s most well-liked and best-selling album to this day.

The band’s greatest and worst moments were captured on the renowned record. I say “worst” because of the complete disarray the group was in at the time, but “best” in terms of the music. The band’s numerous troubled relationships and infidelity were reflected in the album’s conflicted tone. Cocaine was the last substance to be put into the volatile mixture that gave rise to Rumors. The band members developed particularly severe amphetamine addictions by the late 1970s, as appeared typical of the era’s entertainment elite.

When the 1980s rolled around, Nicks decided to go solo in order to give her songs greater exposure and give her bandmates some much-needed breathing room. With her first solo album Bella Donna, released in 1981, she debuted at number one and continued to have commercial success with her follow-up album The Wild Heart, released in 1983.

With the publication of Rock A Little in 1985, Nicks appeared to be at the peak of her game by the mid-1980s, but this was also a very difficult time for the singer. Nicks accompanied Bob Dylan on his Australian tour with Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers not long after the album’s support tour concluded. A cosmetic surgeon threatened to kill Nicks or cause her serious health issues if she didn’t break her cocaine use right before she left for Australia. She remembered the 2009 exchange on The Chris Isaak Hour: “I said, ‘What do you think about my nose?’ And he said, ‘Well, I think the next time you do a hit of cocaine, you could drop dead.'”

As the 1980s brought us closer to the MTV era, making music videos to go along with single releases became increasingly important. Nicks revealed that she used to habitually use drugs in the music video set in the middle of the 1980s. However, looking back, she truly can’t stand the Rock A Little song “I Can’t Wait.” In the book I Want My MTV, she said, “I look at that video, I look at my eyes, and I say to myself, ‘Could you have laid off the pot, the coke, and the tequila for three days, so you could have looked a little better?’ It just makes me want to go back into that video and stab myself.”

During a conversation with The Mirror Nicks remembered thinking about the untimely deaths of Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin in the rock ‘n’ roll genre: “I saw how they went down, and a part of me wanted to go down with them.”

She added, “But then another part of me thought, I would be very sad if some 25-year-old lady rock and roll singer ten years from now said, ‘I wish Stevie Nicks would have thought about it a little more.’ That’s kind of what stopped me and made me really look at the world through clear eyes.”

In the late 1980s, Nicks became clean after realizing the importance of leading a healthy life. However, some of Nicks’ friends were worried that she would relapse and suggested asking her physician for a prescription for Klonopin. Contrary to expectations, this set Nicks on a path toward addiction to Klonopin, which negatively hampered his live performances with Fleetwood Mac in the late 1980s and early 1990s. She later commented, “Klonopin was worse than the cocaine, I lost those eight years of my life. I didn’t write, and I had gained so much weight.”

Thankfully, Nicks ended her problematic connection with Klonopin in 1993 by stopping her medication and checking herself into a difficult 47-day hospital detox. From then on, Nicks’s path has appeared more straightforward.

Below, you can view the music video for “I Can’t Wait” by Stevie Nicks.





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