Day 50. A song that you’ve listened to for years & have just recently begun to appreciate.
“Rooms On Fire” – Stevie Nicks
I have never been a huge Stevie Nicks fan. Frankly, I never really understood what all the fuss was about with her. Everyone seems to taken by her personality and “beauty.” I mean, she seems to have bedded every guy that was ever in Fleetwood Mac (with the exception of Peter Green who went crazy long before anyone even knew who Stevie Nicks was).
But then, I always seemed to look at her a little differently than most people anyway. When Fleetwood Mac had their late-80s resurgence with Tango In The Night and they were all over the place, my friends laughed at me when I said I thought Christine McVie was better-looking than Stevie Nicks.
There was always something about Stevie Nicks’ voice that just didn’t sit well with me, either. I won’t say I hated it, but I didn’t really like it either, especially as it seemed to deteriorate over time and just get more gravelly. (However, I stop short of likening her to a goat like the “South Park” guys.) And then there was all that pretentious pseudo-mysterious “white witch” crap she was always talking about. I just found her a little too much.
Not familiar with a song I’ve mentioned?
Click above to hear samples.
So, short of some of her early hits like “Stand Back” and “Edge Of Seventeen” that I did (and do) like, I didn’t pay too much attention to her solo work.
Not long ago, I found a copy of her Box Set Enchanted floating around here. (See? More of that “magic” BS she loves.) I’m not even sure where it came from, to be honest. But figuring, “What the heck? It’s here so I may as well give it a chance,” I ripped it to iTunes. (I do that from time to time: grab something I’m not really familiar with or music by someone who I might not love and give it a shot. Sometimes it leads to interesting discoveries. More often than not it leads to multiple “delete”s.) Imagine my surprise when, as I went through the tracks, I found that there were some that I really liked. (Much to my chagrin, as I really had preconceived notions on this one.)
One of those was “Rooms On Fire” which was originally on her 1989 release The Other Side Of The Mirror, an album I barely knew existed at the time, if I did at all. I’ve actually had the song for a while and found it okay, but when I heard it again while going through the songs on Enchanted something clicked and I discovered that it was something that stood out. I really liked it.
I think the thing that grabbed me first was the bass line in the chorus. (Bass lines can get me like that. Like “Hand In My Pocket” by Alanis Morrisette and “Everyday Is A Winding Road” by Sheryl Crow.) And then the melody sort of snuck into my head and I realized I liked that too. (Damn it!) And for some the reason the part of the chorus with the lines “There was magic all around you/If I do say so myself” (which is at the very end of the sample, so you may not get the full effect) became a little earworm-y. (And yes, I am aware of the irony of me getting stuck on a line about magic given my earlier statements.)
I had to concede defeat. She’d won me over on this one. And one or two others. Perhaps a few. Alright there were more than a few! Are you happy?
Whew. Deep breaths…
Still, I’m not really fond of Stevie Nicks’ persona and all that magical spiritual crap, but I am gaining a bit more respect for her songwriting and performance over time. I’m still not a huge fan of her voice, but it’ll do. Who knows, maybe I’ll find that the whole freakin’ box set becomes my favorite thing ever and I’ll be out getting her entire catalog. (But I seriously doubt it.)
And call me crazy, but I still think Christine McVie was the better-looking one.