Stevie Nicks first solo album Bella Donna was released in 1980. Since that album’s initial release, Stevie Nicks has released seven more solo albums with her latest 24 Karat Gold: Songs From The Vault being issued in 2014. Aside from her solo efforts, Stevie Nicks has frequently collaborated and appeared as a guest vocalist on albums and songs by rock superstars such as Sheryl Crow, Tom Petty, Walter Egan, Chris Isaak, Don Henley, Todd Rundgren, Ringo Starr, John Stewart, Vanessa Carlton, Bob Welch, Rick Zitto, Robin Zander, BB. King, and Taylor Swift.
Stevie Nicks is one of those rare artists that has celebrated chart success while maintaining an incredible display of integrity and originality. Over the course of her solo career, Stevie Nicks has been nominated for eight Grammy Awards. She has reunited with Fleetwood Mac numerous times since the initial breakup. Our Top 10 Stevie Nicks Songs list takes a look at some of our favorite Stevie Nicks songs which is completely subjective based. However, if you are unfamiliar with her catalog, we feel these are the 10 Stevie Nicks songs you should take a listen to first.
# 10 – Destiny
Stevie Nicks’ song “Destiny,” was released on her 1994 album Street Angel. It’s hard to believe, but Street Angel was the only album released by Stevie Nicks during the 1990s. Her reunion with Fleetwood Mac in 1997 for the Dance Tour seemed to keep her pretty occupied for the time being. In between her shows with Fleetwood Mac, Stevie Nicks also found the time to record with Lindsey Buckingham for the Twister Movie Soundtrack. While her Street Angel album may not have fared well commercially speaking, the album still contained a multitude of treasures.
Songs like “Blue Denim, Rose Garden and Street Angel,” were wonderful pieces of music that stand up well against many of her big hits. However, our favorite song on the album was the double entendre titled “Destiny.” A beautiful song that echoes some of the best work in the Stevie Nicks canon of songs.
# 9 – Sorcerer
The haunting song “Sorcerer,” was issued on Stevie Nicks’ Trouble in Shangri-La album. The record was released on May 1st, 2001. It was Stevie Nicks’ first album since her acclaimed box set Enchanted has been issued in 1998. The album included several tracks produced by Sheryl Crow. One of those tracks entitled “Sorcerer,” blended the mystique of Stevie Nicks past and present with a great rhythmic dark groove anchored by the harmonies of Sheryl Crow.
While Sheryl Crow was an enormous star in the late 1990s and early 2000’s her admiration for Stevie Nicks helped cast her energies into delivering a wonderfully produced version of a Stevie Nicks song that had never been released or recorded other than previous demo versions. The collaboration between Stevie Nicks and Sheryl Crow was a perfect match of talent and creativity that seemed duly inspired by friendship and admiration for each other. It was a mutual collaboration that greatly benefited fans of either artist.
# 8 – Rooms on Fire
Stevie Nicks song “Rooms on Fire,” was released on her album The Other Side of the Mirror. The album has been released in May of 1989. The song “Rooms on Fire,” opened the album and was also the first single released from the record. The song reached the Number 16 spot of the Billboard Hot 100 music charts. The song was a songwriting collaboration between Stevie Nicks, and Rick Nowels. We have chosen “Rooms on Fire,” to be included on our Top 10 Stevie Nicks songs list because the songs somehow seemed to bridge the gaps between Stevie Nicks dance-oriented material with her pop sensibilities and Wild Heart writing style. In essence, it was a pure pop single filled with artistic brilliance substance.
# 7 – If Anyone Falls In Love
Stevie Nicks follow-up album to her solo debut Bella Donna was released on June 10th 1983. The album entitled The Wild Heart featured three singles releases including “Stand Back, If Anyone Falls and Nightbird.” It was an album that featured some of the most important rock musicians of the time period. Guest appearances included Bruce Springsteen’s pianist Roy Bittan, to Toto’s Steve Lukather, Fleetwood Mac’s Mick Fleetwood, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Waddy Watchell, Don Felder, Russ Kunkell and even an appearance by Prince.
If we had to choose our favorite Stevie Nicks album, The Wild Heart would be our choice. As every song on the record has become a sentimental favorite, it became quite difficult to choose only a few to be represented on our Top 10 Stevie Nicks Songs list. We have chosen three. “If Anyone Falls In Loves,” becomes the first to be listed here. We will let the music speak for itself on this one.
# 6 – Leather and Lace
There have been so many wonderful rock and roll duets recorded in classic rock history, Many rock and roll duets have featured a mega artist teaming up with a backup singer or a lesser-known artist. Rarely have we seen a collaboration between two mega artists that worked as well as the collaboration between Stevie Nicks and Don Henley.
Their recording of “Leather and Lace,” has become one of the most earnest and heartfelt duets ever recorded. The song was released on Stevie Nicks s 1981 Bella Donna LP. The song “Leather and Lace,” was the second single released from the album on October 6th 1981. Besides the wonderful vocal that Don Henley provided on the track, the ex-Eagles member also contributed drums to the track.
# 5 – Stand Back
Stevie Nicks ‘ “Stand Back,” was the first single released from her Wild Heart LP. The heavy keyboard-dominated track may sound a bit dated, but it fits perfectly into the sonic landscape of early 1980s synth-dominated radio. The early 1980s featured a renaissance of disco-infused with a modern sound influenced by the Flashdance soundtrack and the success of Michael Jackson’s Thriller album.
The term disco would be changed simply to dance music as gone were the brass horns sections and four-on-the-floor bass drums. The advent of synthesizer technology created a new sound that modeled the reemergence of dance and post-punk new wave sounds. The video “Stand Back,” defines the time period’s influence of dance on pop culture.
# 4 – Edge of Seventeen
It’s hard to believe that the iconic song “Edge of Seventeen,” was not the first single released off the Bella Donna LP. But then again, one cannot really argue against the logic of releasing “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around,” and “Leather and Lace,” as the first two singles. That being said, Stevie Nicks“Edge of Seventeen,” may be the heaviest song of her career. Waddy Wachtel’s dynamic guitar work at the start of the song prepped Stevie Nicks to deliver one of the fieriest vocals she has ever recorded. Along with “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around, “Stevie Nicks “Edge Of Seventeen,” was one of the most frequently played videos on MTV at the dawn of the music video era.
# 3 – Bella Donna
The song “Bella Donna,” was for most of us, the first Stevie Nicks song we ever heard outside of Fleetwood Mac. The song was the opening track to her first solo album Bella Donna And what ways to begin a solo career. Even though Stevie Nicks would continue to record and perform with Fleetwood Mac, “Bella Donna,” firmly established her as an artist that would become one of the most cherished female singer songwriters in history.
We all loved her solo songs in Fleetwood Mac, but “Bella Donna,” delivered on what we all had wanted; more Stevie Nicks songs. In one song, “Bella Donna,” defined the mystical presence that had become synonymous with songs like “Rhiannon,” and “Gold Dust Woman.” The album and song “Bella Donna,” took that mystique to a whole new level.
# 2 – Wild Heart
What had begun with “Bella Donna,” evolved with The Wild Heart. While the mystical forces of enchantment still resonated throughout her work, The Wild Heart album took on a more romantic perspective. It was a focus that defined the concepts of heartbreak, abandonment and the search for true loves among the counter concepts of lust and freedom. The album’s self-titled opening track may have never been released as a single, but it was easily our favorite song on an album that we previously stated as our favorite Stevie Nicks album of all time. So in essence, that is saying a great deal about the song “Wild Heart.”
Everything we love about Stevie Nicks is represented in the “Wild Heart.” Our own character flaws, mistakes and heartbreak can be felt in the most earnest fashion while listening to the song. And somewhere within the lyrics, melody and the sound of Stevie Nicks voice is a communal redemption that serves as a rescue mission. Not many songs can ever serve to repair the damage that life can inflict on so many hearts. Stevie Nicks achieved that rare liberation of the soul that defined the importance of art in the world we live in.
# 1 – Beauty and the Beast (Soundstage Sessions)
Choosing the Number One spot on our Top 10 Stevie Nicks Songs list was a grueling experience because of the emotional connection felt towards many of her songs. Nonetheless, the fun of writing lists and viewing lists is to see what lay at the top. With the help of Paul Buckmaster’s wonderful string section and his masterful experiences writing arrangements for pop musicians, “Beauty and the Beast,” stands as one of the most spectacular performances in a career of spectacular performances.
The song “Beauty and the Beast,” closed out The Wild Heart album. It was a perfect song to close out an album filled with various romantic perspectives. While we love the version of “Beauty and the Beast,” on The Wild Heart album, the version recorded for her Soundstage album is even more breathtaking.
Top 10 Stevie Nicks Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2022
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