Chatting up the Secret Sisters before tonight’s benefit for The Women’s Chorus of Dallas

Tonight, the Secret Sisters headline The Southern Harmony Party at the Lakewood Theater, which also features local band The King Bucks and Audrey Dean Kelley. The night benefits The Women’s Chorus of Dallas, a very gay-friendly organization. In a recent interview with Dallas Voice, real-life sisters Lydia and Laura of the Secret Sisters talked up their connection with the gay community and how growing up Church of Christ never stopped them from accepting people as they are:

So first, how did you get hooked up with The Women’s Chorus of Dallas? We were playing a show in Birmingham, AL several months ago, and met a really nice promoter named De Foster, who loved our sound and was determined to have us play a show in Dallas.  We agreed that we would love to come there and play, and so not long afterwards, he contacted us about playing a show that would benefit the Women’s Chorus.  We love playing shows that are in conjunction with positive organizations, and especially those that are connected to our favorite hobby:  music.  So when we got the invitation to play, we were thrilled!  We are so excited to meet everyone involved with the chorus, and very excited that the focus of the evening will be on women and music.  We both feel that there just aren’t enough strong women in the music industry, and we know that the evening will be positive one, that’s also a lot of fun.

What do such groups mean to you? Any time that we can use our music to highlight organizations that do good things, we are eager to do so. Both of us were in our high school choruses when we were younger, and we know just how much fun it is to be surrounded by your friends, enjoying music that you are making together.  Music means so much to us, and to be able to spend the evening with others who are passionate about it as well is going to be an honor.  We’ve been looking forward to this show for a while now.

More after the jump.

—  Rich Lopez

Before her show at the Verizon Theater tonight, Stevie Nicks talks ‘Glee’ and gays

By Chris Azzopardi | Q Syndicate

Ten years have passed since Stevie Nicks released her last solo album, but she’s still the same gay-loved goddess of earthy rock she built her legend on. Her spring release, In Your Dreams, was exactly how the gypsy queen left us – with that uniform sense of mystical otherworldliness that’s made Nicks a go-her-own-way virtuoso since her days with Fleetwood Mac. White horses, vampire tales and ethereal love parables all seeped into Dreams, her first studio project after reuniting with Fleetwood Mac for 2003’s Say You Will. She’s now on the road for Dreams and her tour stops at Verizon Theater tonight.

Nicks speaks about taking a trip to “the magical world of fairies and angels,” the dress drag queens love, and how her own music motivated her to lose a dozen pounds.

Read the full interview below.

—  Rich Lopez

Nicks in time

Still the gays’ favorite Goth queen, Stevie makes ‘Dreams’ come true

RICH LOPEZ  | Staff Writer
lopez@dallasvoice.com

Stevie1
BACK IN BLACK | Nicks’ first studio CD of new songs in a decade was worth the wait.

We haven’t heard from Stevie Nicks for too long. Excepting her Crystal Visions “best of” album in 2007 and a couple of live-performance releases, she hasn’t dropped a full-length solo disc since 2001’s Trouble in Shangri-La. Then again, what does she have left to prove?

But on In Your Dreams, her seventh release, she proves one thing: That she can still impress us. (Having Eurythmics’ Dave Stewart on her side doesn’t hurt none.)

Screen shot 2011-05-11 at 6.18.30 PMThe first single, the opening track “Secret Love,” sets the pace nicely. Without feeling the need to burst out of the gate, Nicks is patient with “Love,” demonstrating she hasn’t wavered in her songwriting skills. While we may not hear her on Top 40 radio anymore, “Secret” has a strong contemporary feel that’s easy to listen to without compromising Nicks’ style.

Stewart and co-producer Glen Ballard (No Doubt, Michael Jackson) have painted over Dreams with a glossy sheen that enhances Nicks’ move into today’s market rather than take away from her familiar, gritty personality. The slickest of tracks is probably “For What it’s Worth.” As the guitar plays, the strings are a little too crisp, but the construct is beautifully executed and Nicks gets into that low register that’s hard not to love.

What’s not gone is her Victorian Goth ethos. All through the album, we see her in various dramatic outfits and hats; at times, a horse or an owl accompany her. So when she sings “Moonlight (A Vampire’s Dream), it’s never as weird as maybe it should be. The piano builds into a power ballad as she sings about the doomed connection between a female vampire and a man: If he leaves her / he’ll be losing the chance / to stay alive. The same quality comes through on her reworking of Poe’s poem, “Annabel Lee.” What could have easily been goofy tracks are fascinating narratives. Nicks isn’t just a songwriter, she’s a storyteller — a skill forcefully on display here.

Interestingly enough, where Nicks and Stewart collaborate on songwriting is where more of her rocker chick comes out, though matured. The title track and the subsequent “Wide Sargasso Sea” have a stronger pulse, mixed well but letting her jam out just a hair.

They co-wrote the final chapter of the album with a trio of songs. “You May Be the One” goes for a bluesy flair without pretension. Nicks never sounds like she’s trying here, and Stewart plays the guitar with enough restraint to not be Eric Clapton (although nowadays he could pass for his twin). “Italian Summer” is a heavy-handed bump in the collection.

They rebound superbly on the closer, a duet (Stewart sings!). “Cheaper than Free” is without doubt the CD’s sweetest song, one that everyone should give to their significant other. Everyone. You’ll get major points. A bit dreamy, but still with a rock undertone, the song is never in the same league as Nicks’ previous blockbuster duets (“Leather and Lace” and “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around” with Don Henley and Tom Petty respectively), but the good thing is, Nicks doesn’t have to compete with herself.

What Nicks does here with In Your Dreams isn’t any type of comeback or “don’t forget me” album. Instead, she lets us know that she still has songs inside of her waiting to get out. And they’re some damn fine ones.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition May 13, 2011.

—  Kevin Thomas