Rod Stewart and Stevie Nicks @ US Airways Center

Rod Stewart and Stevie Nicks make a pretty good pair for a lot of reasons. For one, both partied incredibly hard in their '70s heydays, when Stewart fronted The Faces, arguably the finest blues rock band England ever produced, and Nicks singing in Fleetwood Mac, definitely the hardest soft-rock band of that decade. Both somehow managed to survive mountains of coke and booze, and have turned from their hard-rocking pasts toward the mellow pastures of adult contemporary Muzak. Guess that puts that Neil Young quote about burning out or fading away to bed, as both artists continue to tour and rake in the dough while shunning both the ridiculous excess and the former bandmates that made them great to begin with. Maybe listeners will catch glimpses of Stewart's ragged glory when he does old gems like "Maggie May," or some of Nicks' Gypsy mysticism on "Landslide" or "Edge of Seventeen," but mostly, expect the tired standards Stewart has been hawking on his latest albums and more vaguely New Age dribble from Nicks. When one considers the alternative, it sounds pretty unreasonable to ask an artist to circle the drain health-wise just so they keep cranking out the jams, but listening to "Cut Across Shorty" and "Sara," I'd say it just about sounds worth it.


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