Stevie Nicks Says Prince Was Terrified About Her Drug Use: ‘You’ve Gotta Be Careful, Stevie’

Fleetwood Mac star Stevie Nicks recently opened up about her relationship with Prince. The two icons collaborated on music together, but they were also friends. Here’s how Nicks said Prince warned her about her drug use. 

Prince performs at the Super Bowl with a purple guitar.
Prince | Theo Wargo/WireImage

Stevie Nicks and Prince were friends and musical collaborators

Singer Stevie Nicks said that she and Prince were just friends, but she thinks he would’ve liked to have been more.

“Prince and I were just friends,” Nicks told Harper’s Bazaar. “I think he would have been happy to have had a relationship.”

But Nicks said she avoided a romantic relationship with him because she appreciated their musical connection.

“I really wanted a musical relationship, and I had smartened up, even then,” she explained. “You’ll break up and never speak again. But he wasn’t interested in just that.”

Nicks and Prince collaborated on the song “Stand Back” from her second solo album. “‘Stand Back’ was inspired by ‘Little Red Corvette,’” Nicks told Rolling Stone. “I called him and said, ‘Can you come to the studio and listen to this song? I’ve sung over your song and written another song and you may hate it and if you do, I won’t do it.’ He came over to Sunset Sound and he loved it – he played piano and guitar on it.”

In turn, Prince’s “When Doves Cry” was inspired by Nicks’ song “Edge of Seventeen.”

Stevie Nicks said Prince warned her about her drug use

The Fleetwood Mac star said that she was heavily into drugs when she collaborated with Prince. “The eighties were pretty bad drug years for me,” Stevie Nicks told The New Yorker. “And Prince was very not into drugs. And the fact that he ended up being on a lot of pain medication just blows my mind, because he was so against it, and he gave me so many lectures about it.”

The “Gypsy” singer said Prince warned her about her drug use. “I’d talk to him every once in a while on the phone, and we’d talk for hours, and he’d go, ‘You gotta be careful, Stevie.’ And I’d go, ‘I know, I know.’”

But it was a plastic surgeon, not Prince, who got Nicks to stop using drugs. 

Stevie Nicks poses in front of a microphone at an event.
Stevie Nicks | Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images

The ‘Rhiannon’ singer has been open about her drug use in the past

Prince’s worries were justified because Stevie Nicks ended up going to rehab twice. The singer checked into the Betty Ford clinic in 1986 for her cocaine addiction, and then went to another hospital in 1993 for her addiction to Klonopin, which Nicks said she was over-prescribed.

“All of us were drug addicts, but there was a point where I was the worst drug addict,” Nicks said (via Far Out Magazine), referring to her Fleetwood Mac bandmates. “I was a girl, I was fragile, and I was doing a lot of coke … so it was dangerous.”

In 1986, Nicks spoke to a plastic surgeon about her nose. The doctor told her she had burned a coin-sized hole in her nose from her cocaine abuse. 

“I said, ‘What do you think about my nose?’” the singer recalled. “And he said, ‘Well, I think the next time you do a hit of cocaine, you could drop dead.’”

Following her conversation with the doctor, Nicks decided to check into the Betty Ford clinic. The move marked a turning point in her life and career, likely saving both. 

How to get help: In the U.S., contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration helpline at 1-800-662-4357.

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