In comments made to MOJO magazine on the eve of Fleetwood Mac‘s UK reunion tour, Stevie Nicks has touched on the importance of women in music.
The sentiments behind her comments focus on the diversity that the female presence can bring to music. “It’s always going to make for more cooler stuff going on than if it’s just a bunch of guys. It’s ultimately more romantic, no matter what. Even if nobody is getting together, it still casts a romantic spell.”
There is no denying the success that Fleetwood Mac found with the addition of Nicks and Christine McVie and in the interview, Nicks talks about the importance of the relationships between band members and their music. She stated that the relationships were “totally important and everybody is still writing about everybody else. It will never stop.”
The sentiment is right: music needs women and all they have to offer – but the delivery is a little bit off. The idea that women cast a “romantic spell” when they’re in a band paints a bit of a negative image, and it’s coupled with a general ‘token-female’ vibe (“should have a girl”). Personally, I’m caught somewhere between agreeing with Nicks and having her comments hit a bit of a nerve. Really, women should be involved in music because they’re good musicians. Spell casting and the gossipy nature of internal relationships (or lack thereof) need to be cast aside. It might make for good songwriting (Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours being a case in point), but the presence of a woman in a band shouldn’t boil down to that and that alone.
Still, strange delivery aside, there is not doubt that women’s involvement in music (at all levels: writing, performing, production, management, etc.) is something that needs to be celebrated, promoted and supported and Nicks is opening up a discussion that still hasn’t really been had.