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Stevie Nicks photographed performing live

Stevie Nicks Talks Tranquilizer Addiction, Lindsey Buckingham's Health

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By Chris Barilla

With the resurgence in success of Stevie Nicks and the rest of Fleetwood Mac's 1977 track "Dreams" thanks to a viral TikTok, the veteran rock band has seemingly been thrust right back into the spotlight almost a half-century after they initially made waves in the industry. 

Now, the group's lead singer has sat down with The Guardian to candidly talk about an overtly less-than-ideal segment of time during her most famous years when she was heavily dependent on tranquilizers. 

Her Addiction

Giphy | Alex Bedder

Leading off her discussion about the pitfalls of Klonopin (tranquilizer) usage, she commented that "It’s a very subtle drug - you just don’t feel it much, or so you think. On the bottle, it says, 'Take as needed.' That’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard. So you think: 'Well, I need it every two hours.' It’s addiction in a bottle."

Nicks is now hyper-aware that during that period of time she was essentially not herself and merely existing for the sake of existing, not experiencing any depth of emotion whatsoever.

How The Drugs Affected Her

Stevie Nicks photographed performing live
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"It was a totally non-time. I just existed. It took away all my wonderful drama, my tempestuousness, my compassion, my empathy – all those things that drove me to my piano. I say to myself now: 'How did you survive eight years without your wonderful drama?"

She reflected on the near decade-long period that she was battling addiction to the substance in question.

Now, she looks back on the time she lost to the drug and wonders what other things she could have accomplished during it if she wasn't addicted.


Fleetwood Mac photographed in 1977
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The singer said that she "always look back and think: What could I have done during that time? Made a Fleetwood Mac album or a solo record. I could have gotten married or had a baby or adopted one. Let me tell you, if anybody ever tries to put you on Klonopin, run screaming out of the room."

Despite her regrets over that period of time, Nicks is now advocating for others to be aware of the pitfalls of substance abuse and how much it can deteriorate from you as a person.

Moving On

Giphy | Alex Bedder

As for other Fleetwood Mac-related news, Nicks discussed the 2018 dismissal from the band and then 2019 heart attack that Lindsey Buckingham fell victim to, saying that although she wished him well following his health issues, she does not see herself ever sharing the stage with him again, “probably never," in her own words.

As a follow-up, Nicks said that she was often posed with the question of if the band members all get along, "We’d go: 'Not really.' They’d say: 'Are you friends?' And we’d go: 'Not really.' 'Do you see each other when you’re not on tour?' 'Er, no.' It has been like that since 1976."

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