Vanessa Carlton is getting ready to record a new album. But first, she’s keeping fans happy with a stream of six covers over a span of six months. Last month, we got to hear her unexpected take on “Call Your Girlfriend,” originally by Robyn. Today’s cover feels a bit more natural for Vanessa: “Dreams” by Fleetwood Mac. Vanessa has been a fan of the band forever, and has worked with and been friends with frontwoman Steve Nicks for years. Stevie sang on Vanessa’s gorgeous 2007 song, “The One,” and later served as officiant at Vanessa and John McCauley’s wedding.
Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams” is one of the most well-known songs of all time. Its gentle soft rock and breathtaking vocals make it a lullaby and anthem all at once. It’s a big song to cover, but Vanessa does a masterful job. Musically, she is faithful to the original, earthy guitars and drums fully intact. Vanessa makes it her own by opting for more reverb on her vocals, singing with more tenderness than Stevie Nicks. It makes for a dreamy cover of the iconic song.
I feel like a lot of people don’t attempt to cover Fleetwood Mac because the personality of these songs are so distinct. I admit, I was terrified to do this, but I sang “Dreams” on stage at a BMI event honoring Stevie Nicks. And I was seven weeks pregnant at the time. No one knew. I got to sing the song with Stevie’s band which was pretty great. Waddy Wachtel, the musical director, gave me “the nod” during rehearsal which, I think, meant he approved. Or at least I’m praying that’s what it meant.
I knew the only way I could honor this song was to get an amazing band. My friend Patrick Hallahan (of My Morning Jacket) is one of my favorite drummers. He lives in Louisville and despite being super busy, woke up early, drove to Nashville, played the song, and drove home. All before noon. The gorgeous harmonies were done by the Watson Twins, Nashville locals who are also from Louisville. And the guitars were all done by Adam Landry, who also produced the track. We sent the song to Stevie for approval, and we got the seal. Dream team!
Listen to Vanessa’s cover of “Dreams” below:
You can stream or download Vanessa’s “Dreams” cover at all the major music providers here. Be sure to check out her first cover, of “Call You Girlfriend,” released last month.
Vanessa Carlton’s last album, Liberman, came out in fall 2015. It launched stunning singles like “Blue Pool,”“Operator,” “House Of Seven Swords,” and “Nothing Where Something Used To Be,” then led to two live releases: Liberman Live and the Earlier Things Live EP. In 2017, Vanessa revealed she was working on a new album, performing its potential title track, “Love Is An Art,” for lucky fans. While we wait for her new original music, Vanessa is spending most of 2018 with a series of six covers.
We’ve heard two of the six covers so far. Stay tuned for the next four covers from Vanessa between May and August. She’s currently working on her next album, too, expected late this year or sometime in 2019. There’s plenty going on in the Vanessa Carlton world now! Keep checking back here for all the latest music news.