‘It affected me very much’: Stevie Nicks on the Beatles connection in Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Beautiful Child’

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Stevie Nicks has spent years sorting through the tangled history of her affairs with bandmates Lindsey Buckingham and Mick Fleetwood. With “Beautiful Child,” however, she was talking about someone else.

The coming-of-age song, part of Fleetwood Mac’s sprawling 1979 effort Tusk, actually focuses on a brief fling that Nicks says she had with Derek Taylor, the late road manager and press officer for the Beatles.

“It didn’t last very long, because he was married,” Nicks says in a newly posted Q&A video, “but it affected me very much, because he told me so many stories about the Beatles.”

Taylor, formerly a journalist, also worked with the Byrds, Harry Nilsson, the Monterey Pop Festival, the Beach Boys and WEA Records over the years. But he will always be best known for his time with the Fab Four, eventually showing up in two of their songs: “Blue Jay Way” finds George Harrison awaiting for Taylor to visit on a foggy night, while John Lennon’s “Give Peace a Chance” also name checks Taylor.

“Everybody has your road manager,” Nicks adds. “We had J.C., crazy J.C. (John Courage, who also worked with Savoy Brown.) Led Zeppelin had Peter Grant. The road managers are the ones who know everything. And so I learned so much about him about the whole world of the Beatles that it was stunning.”

Nicks continues her on-going U.S. tour with Fleetwood Mac, stopping tonight in Tacoma, Washington. Concerts continue through next month in California.

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