How Stevie Nicks and Fleetwood Mac Created “Dreams”



Stevie Nicks and Fleetwood Mac have been put on the charts again thanks to Nathan Apodaca’s viral Tik Tok video. “Dreams” is their only #1 hit song in the US ever, which entered the Hot 100 at #21 on 17 October 2020 to reach a wave of new generations.

Millennials and generations after were previously quick to dismiss Fleetwood Mac’s music as boring and old, and that has flipped as the world looks for different vibes to escape to.

Stevie Nicks channelled the song

The genesis story of the catchy “Dreams” song is a fascinating study into the Step 1 part of manifesting, which is that contrast causes desire. What was the contrast? Having all band members separating from each other (and Mick Fleetwood divorcing his wife). Through the emotionally rough time along with pressure to live up to the success of their previous record Fleetwood Mac (1975), it was a time when they’d push themselves to their limits physically and emotionally to put the album together.

During the production of the album “Rumours”, Stevie Nicks was said to have been constantly bored during the technical parts of the process and sought out a quiet place for some alone time. She had the inklings of a musical idea in her mind and wanted to explore it without distractions. She was wandering around with her Fender Rhodes piano and came across a man who intuited correctly that she was looking for a place to play in peace.

He brought her to a locked room that none of them had known about for the three months that they were there recording, a secret studio owned by Sly Stone of Sly and the Family Stone. She sat on a black and red half-moon circular velveted bed and after 10-20 minutes of vibing out, had completely written and recorded the song “Dreams” on her cassette player.

Co-creating at its best

How Stevie Nicks and Fleetwood Mac Created "Dreams"

It took a while for the rest of the band to see the potential in what Nicks had put together, initially thinking it was boring until Nicks’ ex and bandmate Lindsey Buckingham weaved his magic and brought out the other elements only he could envision to make it the band’s only ever #1 hit song. Funny enough, the line, “Players only love you when they’re playing,” was openly directed at Buckingham, and the rest of the song undoubtedly about him.

The magic of that co-creative experience was only possible because of the pain they were going through, the contrast. Then they switched to music mode i.e. ‘the receptive mode’, and allowed something beautiful to be born out of the darkness.

“We were couples who couldn’t make it through. But, as musicians, we still respected each other — and we got some brilliant songs out of it.” — Stevie Nicks

Co-producer Ken Caillat had mentioned the original recording of Nicks’ voice was flawed in a few parts but its power and energy couldn’t be replicated, so they used it and worked around the imperfections. It was that stream of consciousness that made it so unique and successful, allowing all components of the song – the melody, the lyrics, the rhythm and beat and so on – to just flow through Nicks as a channel.

Perfection – a result of whatever you channel through your higher being?

When you are in the zone and you have no resistant thoughts and allow inspiration to flow through you, that is the magic you capture and appreciate and treasure and share.
You don’t need to try and do better at it, because when you channel your higher self / your inner being, that is probably what we would call perfection.

There are other great similar stories of the first cut being the best, and it’s a good lesson for us to take in terms of the common striving for perfection mindset. Do you know of any examples? Comment below so we can dive into them and share with the rest of our visitors.


Fleetwood Mac – Dreams (Official Music Video)

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