[The Nicks Fix]

New Yorkk Times
May 20, 2001


May 20, 2001

Tuning In: The Singer Picks the Rock of an Age


What makes a rock 'n' roll album great? According to Stevie Nicks, the former Fleetwood Mac singer whose new solo album, "Trouble in Shangri-La," was released earlier this month and quickly entered the Billboard Top 10, the songs have to tell real stories. "If the lyrics are not saying something important," she says, "it's going to be a song that you like for a couple weeks and then never think about again." Here, Nicks lists the best rock 'n' roll albums from the 1970's and thereabouts.

JIMI HENDRIX, "ARE YOU EXPERIENCED?" (1967) "Intense rock 'n' roll, a little bit jazzy. I saw him play once, and I remember thinking, I want to wear white fringe! I want to tie a beautiful silk scarf in my hair! He also did this full-on speaking thing. He was rapping before anybody."

CROSBY, STILLS & NASH, "CROSBY, STILLS & NASH" (1969) "I know every word to every song. They were serious harmony singers. It's almost like a concept record, where it flows from beginning to end. You do not want to skip one song. This is rare."

LEON RUSSELL, "LEON RUSSELL" (1970) "What a piano player, what a voice -- and gorgeous with that long hair! I loved that way he sang, the way he pronounced words, the way he could get so Appalachian funky. I loved that whole Delta Lady-bayou-New Orleans thing."

LED ZEPPELIN, "LED ZEPPELIN IV" (1971) "I was so touched by this record -- that incredible ability to be such a hard-rock band, but still be so melodic. Songwriting was their brilliance -- Robert [Plant] and Jimmy [Page] wrote most of it. It was almost too much talent for one stage."

JONI MITCHELL, "COURT AND SPARK" (1974) "Nobody plays guitar like her. And the way she phrased -- she could put a whole bunch of words into one sentence and not make it sound crowded until you tried to sing along. Songs like 'Same Situation' tell the story of her rock 'n' roll life, which was mine too."

The Nicks Fix main page