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"Edge of Seventeen" is a song by American singer-songwriter Stevie Nicks from her solo debut studio album Bella Donna (1981), released as the third single from Bella Donna on February 4, 1982. The song was written by Nicks to express the grief resulting from the death of her uncle Jonathan and the murder of John Lennon during the same week of December 1980 and features a distinctive, chugging 16th-note guitar riff, and a simple chord structure typical of Nicks' songs.
In the United States, "Edge of Seventeen" just missed out on the top-ten of the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at number eleven. Despite not reaching the top-ten, it became one of Nicks' most enduring and recognizable songs and has been covered by many artists, notably American actress and singer Lindsay Lohan on her second studio album A Little More Personal (Raw) (2005). The distinctive riff was sampled by American R&B trio Destiny's Child in their number-one song "Bootylicious" (2001), with Nicks making a cameo appearance in the "Bootylicious" music video playing a guitar.
Background and inspiration
According to Stevie Nicks, the title came from a conversation she had with Tom Petty's first wife Jane, about the couple's first meeting. Jane said they met "at the age of seventeen", but her strong Southern accent made it sound like "edge of seventeen" to Nicks. The singer liked the sound of the phrase so much that she told Jane she would write a song for it and give her credit for the inspiration.
Although Nicks had originally planned to use the title for a song about Tom and Jane Petty, the death of her uncle Jonathan and the death of John Lennon during the same week of December 1980 inspired a new song for which Nicks used the title. Nicks' producer and friend Jimmy Iovine, was a close friend of Lennon and Nicks felt helpless to comfort him. Soon after, Nicks flew home to Phoenix, Arizona to be with her uncle Jonathan, who was dying of cancer. She remained with her uncle and his family until his death.
Perhaps appropriate for a song named for a
mondegreen, "Edge of Seventeen" has been cited frequently as a source
of misheard lyrics since its release. The line "Just like a white winged
dove" is sometimes misheard as "just like the one we know,"
"just like the world we know", "just like the wild wind does
sings a song", or "just like the ones we love". The song was
used in the movie School of Rock as the favorite song of the female principal
of a high school, jokingly referring to
a common misinterpretation that the song is about an older woman falling for an
underage teen boy.Please email any questions -