Throughout her career, Stevie Nicks has continued to surround herself with artists that she finds inspiring. When Lana Del Rey came calling in 2017, she couldn’t resist the opportunity and later said the experience “changed me forever”.
Their joint track featured on Del Rey’s 2017 album Lust For Life, and it was a mutually beneficial exercise. Nicks has always had an open mind when it comes to collaboration, and if the opportunity feels right, then the Fleetwood Mac singer will happily oblige.
In recent years, she’s lent her voice to Miley Cyrus’ work and also created the utterly forgettable ‘Remedy’ with Maroon 5. While not all of her experiments have been a success, Nicks’ willingness to associate herself with the younger generation of artists deserves to be applauded.
Out of the list of artists that she has recently joined forces with, nobody has inspired her artistically like Del Rey. Nicks was approached late on during the recording process of Lust For Life because the singer “really felt like I wanted [another] woman on the record”.
The dream alliance was brokered by her longtime producer Rick Nowels who has known Nicks since they were teenagers, and she gave him his debut production credit back in 1995.
Although Del Rey already thought Lust For Life was finished, the addition of Nicks on ‘Beautiful People, Beautiful Problems’ was that extra sparkle that she felt the album needed to take it up a level.
Speaking to KROQ about working with her hero, the ‘Video Games’ singer said: “She was amazing. She’s just everything you hope she’s gonna be. She’s so contemporary, and she knows all the new music that’s out weekly. She loved the track and she added so much to it.”
Del Rey added: “She’s one of the few people I know that says the muse is the most important thing to her. More than anything else, her priority is just following the muse wherever it takes her, whether it’s a 60-date tour or new record or solo endeavour. So she’s inspirational like that.”
The pair had a conversation together for V Magazine to promote the track, and surprisingly, Nicks seemingly gained more from their encounter than her younger accomplice. “You have a beautiful voice and I’ve already learned things to add to how I sing from you,” Nicks told Del Rey. “Working on your song has changed me forever because I’ve learned from you.”
Nicks added: “We are witchy sisters and that’s it. That’s where ‘Beautiful People, Beautiful Problems’ comes from because we are trying to ride above all the problems and have hope in everything else, but it’s still a world filled with problems no matter how hard we try to change it.”
‘Beautiful People, Beautiful Problems’ is proof of the magic that can happen when artists across generations come together and should act as encouragement for others to bridge this divide. Through working with the likes of Del Rey, Nicks is staying abreast of contemporary trends, and her refreshing attitude towards collaborations is partially why she continues to resonate with younger generations.