As mentioned previously, half of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame’s current roster of female inductees were inducted as members of female inclusive bands. It can easily be argued that several of those women deserve to be honored as solo artists, and Stevie Nicks is undeniably one of those women. The fact that she’s been dubbed time and time again as “The Queen of Rock and Roll” should be reason enough to have her honored individually, but although she was inducted in 1998 with super group Fleetwood Mac (a band whose only number one U.S. single was penned by Nicks), she has yet to be recognized as a solo artist, despite having an extensive and wildly successful solo career spanning over 30 years.
1981 saw Nicks’s solo debut with the release of “Bella Donna,” which topped the Billboard charts and reached platinum status in just three months. The album went on to reach quadruple platinum status. On the heels of that success, Nicks was anxious to prove it was no fluke. Her sophomore solo album, 1983’s “Wild Heart,” went double platinum and reached number five on the Billboard charts. Two years later, in late 1985, Nicks’s third solo studio album, “Rock a Little,” was released and climbed to the top 20 in its first two weeks, peaking at number 12, and eventually going platinum in its first month. Her last album of the ‘80s, “The Other Side of the Mirror,” released in 1989, also went on to gain platinum status after peaking at number 10 on the charts. In one decade, Stevie Nicks released four charting albums, toured those four charting albums, and had 13 singles make the top 40 on the rock charts, in addition to releasing and touring two albums with Fleetwood Mac.
In the ‘90s, Nicks released two compilation albums — “Timespace: The Best of Stevie Nicks,” which went platinum, and “Enchanted,” as well as her only studio album of the decade, “Street Angel.” In 2001, she returned to the top 10, with “Trouble in Shangri-La” peaking at number five. The tour to follow her 6th studio release was one of the highest grossing tours of the year. It would take Nicks another decade to revisit the making of a solo record, but she never stopped making music. Nicks still went on to tour both solo and as a member of Fleetwood Mac through the first 10 years of the millennium, leaving her no time to slip into rock and roll obscurity.
In 2011, 30 years after the release of “Bella Donna,” “In Your Dreams” debuted at number 6 on the Billboard 200, and included a companion behind the scenes documentary of the same title. In 2013 “American Horror Story: Coven” introduced Stevie Nicks and her music to a new generation of rock and roll fans, with six episodes featuring her music, and two of those episodes featuring Stevie Nicks herself. Most recently, Nicks embarked on her much anticipated 24 Karat Gold Tour — a belated tour for her 2014 double album “24 Karat Gold: Songs From the Vault,” which charted at number 7 and number 3 respectively on the U.S. and U.S. Rock charts. So far the tour has visited 27 cities, many of which were sold out shows, with at least one date breaking a record for fastest sell-out in the venue’s history. This is Nicks’s 17th tour appearing as a solo artist.
You’ll find on the official Rock & Roll Hall of Fame site that to qualify, in addition to having had a career spanning at least 25 years, an artist being considered for induction must also have had a significant impact on the development, evolution, and preservation of rock & roll. Even without considering the fact that Stevie Nicks has acted as a mentor for younger songwriters in the industry, been mentioned as a significant influence by countless other artists, and shown up to support the future of music in so many ways, her qualifications can’t be denied. Show up to any number of her shows, and you’ll find fans young and old alike, draped in shawls, wearing top hats and platform boots, singing along to every word of “Edge of Seventeen.” Stevie Nicks’s influence, much like the songstress herself, is anything but subtle, and after 36 years of prolific and significant contributions to rock & roll as a solo artist, it’s time for this chanteuse to have her own place in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.