This is a story that could be told in one of two ways. The first way is to talk about the song professionally and the back story behind the cover version, to spare the more emotional part and keep it pro. The second way, however, to tackle this is more interesting and I think that the first part can wait, that I can insert all necessary details into the story of how Fleetwood Mac's "Silver Springs" means so much to me.
I was never the kind of girl to fall in love. I always dreamed about it but in reality, it just wasn't for me. In theory, I was a sweet girl who was witty and cute and fun to talk to and had any number of gentlemen pursuing me at any given time. In actuality, however, I was a sweet girl who was witty and cute and fun to talk to and had any number of gentlemen pursuing me at any given time who broke the hearts of every boy who ever asked her out. I didn't mean to and it wasn't fun but I couldn't help myself - I just didn't want to be in love. Then, suddenly, one day, I fell in love. It doesn't matter with whom or why or how it happened. The point is that it did happen and it was shocking but what was more shocking was that he didn't love me back. Coming to terms with that fact and what it meant has taken up the majority of my life since it became glaringly obvious, in the worst break up that I pretended I was fine with of all time. I've been waiting, anxiously, for the day when I finally no longer feel the spark of heat inside of me when I see him, for when I don't inadvertently smile when he texts me, for when I stop getting that unmistakable face when I'm watching him from across a room, a face which the vast majority of my (mostly male) pals seem to be mercifully oblivious to.
It wasn't until I was listening to Fleetwood Mac late one night that "Silver Springs" came on and it hit me: My biggest fear is being Stevie Nicks. My biggest fear is that this fellow I fell for would be my Lindsey Buckingham, that I would never really fall in love again, and I would spend the rest of my life alone. This, of course, is not completely fair on my part to Stevie Nicks. I'm assuming that she still loves Buckingham, or that at least part of her does, and that the words she sang in "Silver Springs" still ring true. "I could have loved you but you would not let me."
See, the thing is that I'm not a good girlfriend. I drink too much, I cheat, I'm distant, and I just all around suck at telling people how I feel about them. I don't say what I want because I don't know what I want and even if I do, it's all too likely that what I want will change drastically in ten minutes time. That being said, what kills me is the fact that I know I could have loved this boy, had he let me, and I know I would have been the best damn girl he ever had.
It's hard to take a song as fantastically beautiful as "Silver Springs" and cover it. The original is just about perfect, be it the version that never made it on to Rumors or the live take of the track that eventually saw the light of day on Fleetwood Mac's big "reunion" cd, 1997's The Dance. Couple the fact that musically, the song is impeccable and the overtones of heartache are palpable with the fact that Nicks's voice is an instrument in and of itself, forcing the listener to take the anger and longing she feels and feels it too, and you have a song that most musicians shouldn't touch. That being said, Stacy Dupree of the band Eisley's version of "Silver Springs" is just as hauntingly beautiful as the original, even if at the end of the day, Nicks's version is still the one that sticks with you.
I talked about this in length to fellow RFC-er Abby Holmes recently and she said that it's possible I'll never get over him. Even if I do, as unlikely as it seems, I think "Silver Springs" will always bring me back, tugging my mind back to it's mid-20's self, lovesick and heartaching, trying in equal and contradictory parts to "get over him" and desperately hold on to the small spark of hope I have that one day, he'll realize how much he missed out on with me and come around. In reality, I know that will never happen. In thoery, however, the hope that one day, it just might keeps me from ever taking my eyes completely off him, letting myself be free enough to fall for someone else. It's just like how in theory, I'm a sweet girl who is witty and cute and fun to talk to and has any number of gentlemen pursuing me at any given time. The reality is different and boys will keep falling in love with the girl who can't love them back until she finally gives up the ghost.
As for the song, I still prefer the original that never made it onto Rumors if only for the end when Nicks's voice is so ripe with bile that you realize not only is she heartbroken about Buckingham but she's angry about it too and that anger stings the listener. That was Nicks's intention with "Silver Springs", to haunt Buckingham for the rest of his life with her voice, to remind him of how he scorned her every time he heard the song. The vindictive fire Nicks's spits in the last forty seconds of "Silver Springs" rivals anything I've ever done, save one sort-of-angry blog post months and months ago, and to say I admire her balls is an understatement: Imagine being heartbroken and in a band with the man who put you in such a sorry state. And instead of leaving the band, being courageous enough to write a song as heart-on-your-sleeve as "Silver Spring" and sing it in said band.
If I had balls like that, I'd... Well, things probably wouldn't be that different in my life. But it'd be cool, regardless.