HomeEntertainmentStevie Nicks Says She Is ‘Very Sober Now,’ After 8-Year Addiction Struggle

Stevie Nicks Says She Is ‘Very Sober Now,’ After 8-Year Addiction Struggle

by Jennifer Shea
Randy Holmes/ABC

Singer Stevie Nicks has led a wild life. But these days, she’s happy to curl up with her dog, Lily, plus an issue of Vogue and a cup of tea.

Nicks’ long and winding road

Nicks has traveled a difficult road to sobriety. As she recounted in a new interview with The Guardian, she spent much of the 1970s on drugs – a situation that she says contributed to her abortion in 1979.

“There’s just no way that I could have had a child then, working as hard as we worked constantly. And there were a lot of drugs, I was doing a lot of drugs,” she told The Guardian. “I would have had to walk away.”

Nicks confided that Fleetwood Mac’s cocaine use had reached “industrial” levels by the late ’70s. The band’s problems escalated – fights, breakups – but that didn’t mark the end of the singer’s drug abuse.

Creative wasteland

It’s not the cocaine she really regrets, Nicks said; it’s the Klonopin. She spent eight years addicted to the drug starting in 1986 after she emerged from rehab for cocaine addiction. A psychiatrist had given her the Klonopin to ease her sleep problems.

“It’s a very subtle drug,” Nicks said. “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 described that period to The Guardian as a creative wasteland stretching out over nearly a decade. She said she “just existed” – no drama, no empathy, no vivacity, no piano playing. 

“I always look back and think: what could I have done during that time?” Nicks wonders now. “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.”

Fortunately, that period is over. Nicks is out with a new live concert film, “24 Karat Gold,” which encapsulates 40 years of hits, unreleased songs and anecdotes from the road.

“I love having the opportunity to share this concert with my fans,” Nicks said.