Stevie Nicks and Billy Joel took over Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, MA, on Saturday with a crowd of all ages who came to see the two music icons take the stage for one night only. It was clear from the age range of audience members their musical impact has spanned generations. Everyone was in good spirits despite most of the crowd donning ponchos to brave the torrential rain that barely let up the whole night. Gillette is famous for their rain shows, and this one was no different; the crowd was fully ready to give the two greats their all, and it paid off.
Stevie Nicks started the night off. She ironically opened the set with “Outside the Rain” and then joked about how she had enough with the rain theme for the remainder of the night. Having grown up listening to Fleetwood Mac, to be able to hear the greatest hits was a full-circle moment. She often would introduce the song with an anecdote, one of the more notable ones being from before “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around” featuring Tom Petty. He had notability saved her album by giving her this song that would go on to earn them a Grammy nomination in 1982. While there are not many fill-ins for Petty, Billy Joel would make the short list and made a special appearance with an umbrella to sing Tom Petty’s verses. It was still incredible that even after all these years, it is evident that she still enjoys being on stage, even adding in multiple costume changes, including the original Bella Donna cape from the album photo shoot.
The set provided a good mix of Fleetwood Mac as well as solo Stevie Nicks tracks, which catered to the varying ages of the fans that were in attendance. Nicks had two notable dedications in her set, the first one being during her cover of “Free Fallin” by longtime friend Tom Petty and the song was accompanied by a photo montage of their years of friendship. She ended the set smiling with the joke that she would come back when it’s not raining. The encore consisted of the Fleetwood Mac classics “Rhiannon” and “Landslide,” which she dedicated to Christine McVie. Following the emotional encore, she took a bow with her band and thanked the fans for coming out to support them.
After the star-powered performance of Stevie Nicks’ set, I could only guess how Billy Joel could follow something like that, and it’s safe to say he exceeded my expectations. He came out in a jacket, scarf and jeans, making it feel like a casual Saturday night show. Joel joked with the crowd, saying there’s not going to be anything new, but it means his old records are timeless. He began his set with “My Life” followed by “Movin’ Out (Anthony’s Song).” He truly made it look so easy at one point, standing up for a few songs, joking about how he was “no Mick Jagger,” and his band started the opening notes of the Rolling Stones hit “Start Me Up.”
I enjoyed how he gave every member of his band an introduction and allowed them to showcase their immense talent throughout his set. He ended the set with “Scenes from an Italian Restaurant” and the forever classic “Piano Man.” After a brief break, his encore lasted five songs, starting with “We Didn’t Start the Fire” and ending with “You May Be Right.” The love for performing is so clear from Billy Joel, and he did not let the weather stop him from making sure everyone had a great time.
Being able to see both Stevie Nicks and Billy Joel on the same night was one of the greatest concert experiences I have had so far. It is so evident how they have both aged so well and are still filled with a love for performing. This was one show you wouldn’t want to miss, so I would make sure to check out these last few dates of the tour!