NYMPHS, NAIFS, AND NYMPHETS GALORE: Fleetwood Mac Fest, L.A. 2/9/16

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A star-studded night to remember in Glitterville USA. “Hoo-wee, it was fun!” says our sweet shutterbug, of her night out on Feb. 9 at L.A.’s Fonda Theatre. (Pictured above: S Nicks Alert! Z Berg of Phases, Gorgeously resplendent in gossamer black.”)

TEXT & PHOTOS BY SUSAN “GYPSY” MOLL

For the better part of a decade now, The Best Fest brain trust has produced a host of namesake musical events in the U.S. and abroad honoring the likes of George Harrison, Bob Dylan, Brian Wilson and Neil Young for the benefit of various charities. The ninth and tenth of February, however, belonged to Fleetwood Mac, and the Fonda Theatre enticed Angelenos back to the velvet underground for Fleetwood Mac Fest L.A., whose proceeds helped fund the Sweet Relief and Sweet Stuff organizations.

Nymphs, naifs, and nymphets galore turned out, many swathed in diaphanous Nicksian raiment and channeling the sisters of the moon within. Events of this nature, especially those held in Hollywood, make for interesting bedfellows. Sarah Silverman, Courtney Love and Perry Farrell all signed on to perform, and Ron Jeremy was even reportedly spotted backstage…

Emceed by the Cabin Down Below Band, the singers, songwriters, actors and various and sundry others plumbed the depths of the Fleetwood Mac canon as well as the solo output of its principals. A sprightly Carly Rae Jepsen had just enough time to drop in for “Hold Me” before boarding a red-eye to New York to film a video… Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig— both of Lucius, each sporting a vermilion quiff—teamed up for a passionate take on “I Don’t Wanna Know.” …Bijou Phillips and better half Danny Masterson (That ‘70s Show) checked in with the rollicking “Second Hand News,” and Pacific Northwest songsmith Noah Gundersen mesmerized all with his interpretation of “Little Lies.”… Jack Dishel of Moldy Peaches fame nimbly played every one of Lindsey Buckingham’s notes to perfection on “Holiday Road,” an ideal complement to the day’s balmy weather…

No Mac-centric event is complete without “Gypsy,” and it all came down to Music City songbird Jessie Baylin. …Fellow Nashvillian Ruby Amanfu, one of Jack White’s Peacocks, delivered “I’m So Afraid” as only a true soul diva could…. Gorgeously resplendent in gossamer black, Z Berg led Phases through “Everywhere,” one of the setlist’s many acmes…. Dhani Harrison and Mereki Beach, performing as Dhani & Mereki, played a subtle, poignant interpretation of “Landslide” that easily put the Smashing Pumpkins’ to shame. We witnessed Harrison milling through the audience post-set but dared not approach. If this were the closest we’d ever get to our favorite Beatle, we’d take it. … KT Tunstall puzzled over Mick Fleetwood’s wooden balls, as anyone who’s ever listened to or at the very least been conscious of Rumours has, before tearing into “You Make Loving Fun.”… A barefoot Courtney Love managed to remain upright through her tone-deaf version of “Silver Springs” and couldn’t resist victimizing the audience with a flash of her ass as she left the stage… The girl with the most cake? Joanna Newsom, who played the tender “Beautiful Child” not on the harp, alas, but from behind a piano in a distant corner of the stage… Juliette Lewis, fierce in a saffron catsuit, completely obliterated the cloud of fairy dust Newsom left in her wake with her ferocious rendition of “Stand Back.”… A statuesque vision in scarlet, Karen Elson took a solo turn with “Rhiannon,” joined Will Forte (Saturday Night Live) and Weezer’s Brian Bell for “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around,” and made way for Mark Ronson, Butch Walker and an out-of-control Alison Mosshart for “The Chain.” …Twenty-eight songs later, the evening culminated in “Don’t Stop.” It’s safe to say no one did.

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Alison Mosshart & Butch Walker

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Bijou Phillips

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Carly Rae Jepsen

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Dhani Harrison

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Danny Masterson

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Jack Dishel

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Jamestown Revival

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Jess + Holly (Lucius)

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Jessie Baylin

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Joanna Newsom

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Juliette Lewis

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Karen Elson

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KT Tunstall

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Noah Gundersen

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Phases

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Ruby Amanfu

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Mereki Beach

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The Pierces

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Sarah Silverman

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