Why Stevie Nicks Begged Fleetwood Mac To Record “Dreams”
via Fleetwood Mac / Youtube
Behind the success and popularity of Fleetwood Mac’s iconic song “Dreams” lies a tale of creative disagreements within the band. Stevie Nicks, the talented songwriter, and vocalist, had to plead with her bandmates to record the song that would go on to become one of their biggest hits. In this article, we delve into the story behind “Dreams” and how Stevie Nicks’ determination ultimately prevailed, leading to the creation of a timeless masterpiece.
Stevie Nicks’ Plea: The Creation of “Dreams”
“Dreams” was written by Stevie Nicks during a recording session for Fleetwood Mac’s 1977 album Rumours. Nicks revealed in a 2005 interview that she composed the song in just 10 minutes, crafting it around a simple set of chords. Initially, when she presented the song to her bandmates, they were not enthusiastic about it. However, Nicks passionately pleaded with Fleetwood Mac to give it a chance, recognizing its unique potential.
“They weren’t nuts about it,” Nicks admitted. “But I said, ‘Please! Please record this song, at least try it.’ Because the way I play things sometimes… you really have to listen.”
Her unwavering belief in the song’s worth and her ability to convey its potential convinced the band to reconsider.
Lindsey Buckingham’s Impact: Rearranging the Song
Despite the on-and-off relationship and frequent conflicts between Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham during the recording of Rumours, Buckingham set aside personal differences and took on the task of rearranging “Dreams” to make it work. When Nicks first presented the song to Christine McVie, she found it “boring.” However, Buckingham’s creative genius came into play as he transformed the track by fashioning three distinct sections from identical chords, giving it a cohesive and captivating quality.
McVie revealed to Blender:
“When Stevie first played it for me on the piano, it was just three chords and one note in the left hand. I thought, ‘This is really boring,’ but the Lindsey genius came into play, and he fashioned three sections out of identical chords, making each section sound completely different. He created the impression that there’s a thread running through the whole thing.”
The Chart-Topping Success of “Dreams”
“Dreams” was released as the second single from Rumours, following the hit “Go Your Own Way.” Surpassing its predecessor, “Dreams” climbed to the top of the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, becoming Fleetwood Mac’s only No. 1 hit on the charts. The success of the song solidified Nicks’ conviction and justified her persistence in pushing for its inclusion on the album.
“Sometimes you can get tired of singing a certain song over and over again,” she explained. “But i have never gone onstage, either with Fleetwood Mac or in my solo shows, without singing ‘Dreams’. I don’t think I could.”
With its chart-topping success and inclusion on Rumours, Fleetwood Mac’s most successful and popular album, “Dreams” cemented its place in music history. The album reached No. 1 on multiple charts worldwide and has sold over 40 million copies. The timeless appeal of “Dreams” continues to captivate audiences, making it a fan-favorite during Stevie Nicks’ live performances.