Concert Review - Stevie Nicks/Boz Scaggs
Monday, July 27
By Darryl Morden
The belladonna of melodrama has returned, much to the delight of the faithful flock willing to surrender to all her spells. But even if you weren't a devout member of the coven, Stevie Nicks was at her most charming and entertaining in years, despite some over-the-top (surprise, surprise) arrangement excess.
The once solemnly tight-lipped Nicks was quite chatty with the celebrity-dotted hometown crowd. Touring behind "Enchanted," the new box set including her '80s solo material and live versions of Fleetwood Mac classics, she mixed them all in during a generous two-hour set containing most of the all-time fan favorites and some obscure material.
Of course, the full house went wild for the likes of "Rhiannon," reworked from its original album incarnation into the version heard on Fleetwood Mac's "The Dance" last year, and rose to its feet for the synth-drenched, beat-propelled "Stand Back." Mick Fleetwood turned up late in the show, a tall, lanky, bug-eyed Desi Arnaz on conga, jamming with the band's drummer and percussionist before Nicks and the rest of the crew returned for a cluttered "Edge of Seventeen."
Yet the richest moments came with several nonhit "great lost" songs such as the fun-rocking "Enchanted," which Nicks seemed to truly relish, and a more intimate three-song acoustic set of numbers from her days as a duo with Lindsey Buckingham in the early '70s.
In Fleetwood Mac, all individual idiosyncrasies are held in check: here, from a dozen shawl changes to such non sequitor effects as thunderstorms, quirks were paraded in all their glory. But for longtime Nicks fans, a few twirls on her stiletto-heeled boots were a thrill, even if her voice isn't what it used to be.
Opening act Boz Scaggs revived the slick R&B of his 1976 "Silk Degrees" album, tepid funkiness at its best and a contrast to his fine, straight-ahead blues album of last year. When he turned to the older, hard-core blues of "Loan Me a Dime," recorded with Duane Allman, Scaggs truly caught fire, from his stunning electric guitar to stabs of a Hammond B-3 organ.
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