Aug 26, 2011

Stevie Nicks at the Rosemont Theater on 8/23/11

My friend Joanne (pronounced JO-NEE), wanted to go see a show with me. She claimed that she would have seen Florence and the Machine with me but I did not invite her (a total lie). I told her to pick any show and I would go with her. Stevie Nicks was the winner. Although Joanne had angst about her choice (was Stevie still cool? Would she do her old stuff? Would it be fun? Would she only do her new songs that no one cares about?). Joanne does not go to concerts much so it was scary to suggest a show, and be with the likes of me, a concert addict. It turned out to be a fantastic choice. Stevie served up an amazing 2 hour show and did not disappoint.

For starters, those of you who live in the city of Chicago, we ate dinner at Sola on Lincoln Ave. If you like seared tuna, order the seared panko crusted tuna. Very delicious. The tempura battered avocado on the side was not a bad thing either. If you want to eat near the venue, it turns out that there is a Gibson's steakhouse right next door. You can park and have dinner right there. As for parking, that is another matter altogether. Leave yourself enough time to battle the car line off the expressway to get into the $20 lot near the venue. The other option is to park at the far lot for $5 and walk about 10-15 minutes to the venue (or take a city bus...). We did not realize that you needed to find the one pay to park meter located near the entrance of the far lot and pay your $5. We insanely thought it was "free" at night. This insane assumption cost me a $50 ticket (which I am in the process of appealing don't you worry). No attendant and not seeing a "pay to park" meter does not mean free. Keep looking. Enough said about that but now you all know what to do and have gained from my inexperience with the suburbs and suburban parking lots.

Moving on to the venue and performance! The venue, Rosemont theater, is a nice place! Small elegant venue (seats about a thousand) and great acoustics. Our tickets were on the main floor and center so we were in excellent position to hear and see everything. Having sold more than 140 million albums, Stevie (ne Stephanie Lynn) was named the “Queen of Rock and Roll” by Rolling Stone magazine. Joining up with Fleetwood Mac in 1974 she would go on to become one of the most iconic women in the music industry. With 8 Grammy nominations on her own and 5 with Fleetwood Mac, it is hard to argue that Nicks is not one of the most powerful artists amongst our Queens of Vinyl. ( Tonight, Stevie served up a blend of old and new. Her "In Your Dreams" tour, is named from her current and first release in 10 years. She alternated songs, old then new, throughout the show. This lent itself well to a game of musical chairs since everyone sat during her new songs and stood immediately for an old adored song. The show also lent itself well to a mass "sing along". As often is my luck, I happened to sit next to a Stevie #1 fan who knew every lyric, including pauses and ad libs, who thought we were paying her to perform (Why so loud? Have a little etiquette!). Sheesh.

The set list (which may be off but close to this):

1.Stand Back
2. Annabel Lee
3. Dreams
4. Sorcerer
5. Moonlight (A Vampire's Dream)
6. Gold Dust Woman
7. Ghosts are Gone
8. Soldier's Angel
9. In Your Dreams
10. Rhiannon
11. For What Its Worth
12. Secret Love
13. Fall From Grace
14. Cheaper than Free
15. Edge of Seventeen
16. Leather and Lace
17. Love Is

A highlight of the evening was a rare opportunity to hear her sing "Leather and Lace"(originally sung with Don Henley) as a duet with her vocal trainer (his voice was like butter). It was special. Here is a video that a fan took from her Red Rocks show in Colorado:

She also showed video of her with her father earlier in the show which was extremely touching.
Stevie introduced most of her songs and had charisma and grace rarely seen on stage. We felt as if we could easily talk to her and not feel intimidated. Her vocals were as strong and fabulous as ever. It might as well have been 1974 because she looked fantastic and her vocals have not aged one bit. We especially appreciated not only her signature black and white dresses, platform boots, and cape-like shawls but also her microphone stand bling.

At age 62, Stevie Nicks is as iconic as ever. This was a fantastic show and her vocals were spot on. The show and venue both get at 5 out of 5 guitar rating, whether I have to pay a $50 parking ticket or not.

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