''Enchanted'' -- The new boxed set marks Stevie's wondrous comeback

Three years ago, it might have been laughable to imagine Stevie Nicks as the goddess du jour again, with the market price of gold dust falling so. Overweight and fed up at the end of a tour promoting her least successful solo album (Street Angel), she vowed never to put herself through that again. Rather than retire with her royalties, though, she slimmed down and kicked smoking, too — serendipitously shedding her last remaining vices and recovering her voice just in time for hell to freeze over in the form of 1997’s Fleetwood Mac reunion. ”We didn’t all enjoy it very much the first time because we were too high and too uptight, so this time it’s really been fun,” she says. Now that Nicks is again the toast of the town, with Courtney Love and Billy Corgan prostrating themselves at her boots, a new boxed set, Enchanted — documenting the solo career that began with 1981’s Bella Donna — arrives at just the right moment to capitalize on her renaissance.

EW: When this last phase of Fleetwood Mac came to an end, the reason given was that Christine McVie didn’t want to go on to Europe. True?

NICKS: That’s exactly the way it was. About halfway through the tour, she just was not happy. And it was hard for everybody. What can you say? ”Get happy”? Been there, done that — that’s how she feels. So we just had to let her go. [But] we’re never gonna break this band up again, so without her, it won’t ever go back together. In two years, Chris may be very bored. And you know Mick is hoping that Chris gets very bored!

EW: Watching you and Lindsey Buckingham sing ”Silver Springs,” fans liked to suppose there was old anger surfacing.

NICKS: Oh, yeah. It’s hard to sing those words without getting into what you’re saying a little bit. [But] Lindsey and I can have that very dramatic, Hepburn/Tracy thing that goes on onstage between us, and it doesn’t come off the stage now. Or at least it hasn’t yet. So maybe we’re actually fighting through some of our former problems by singing ”Silver Springs” to each other every night. I think Lindsey and I are better friends now than we’ve ever been.

EW: You had a terrible experience with antidepressants.

NICKS: I want people to know, if they followed my career and wonder what happened between about 1988 and 1993, those years are just nearly gone for me. I had just stopped doing cocaine, and I was totally fine. But, to soothe everybody’s feathers around me, I went to a psychiatrist. Boy, I wish I’d gotten sick that day. He put me on Klonopin, like a Valium thing. By 1989, it wasn’t that I didn’t write well, I just stopped writing. And because of being on a tranquilizing drug, of course you make very bad decisions — I fired people, I hired people…. It nearly destroyed me. I think the real reason why I’m angry is, I was successful, I was doing well in a man’s world, I’m a rock star — I didn’t have anything to be depressed about!

EW: Getting off antidepressants was worse than getting off cocaine?

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