A brush with fame

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 14, 2003

If you happened to glance through the June 10 issue of the magazine ‘Woman’s World’ on the newsstands recently, you caught a glimpse of a young woman who knows that good things can come out of the most terrible situations. Her smiling face just might have been familiar to many of you.

Erica Knight, a McKenzie High senior, was featured in a magazine story entitled ‘Erica’s online angels’.

The bright, outgoing 17-year-old, a dedicated fan of songstress Stevie Nicks and the legendary rock band Fleetwood Mac, gained many fans of her own when she went online and shared her often wise and witty observations on music and movies.

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When a tornado destroyed her home and possessions in November 2001, Erica’s online pals from all over the world came through for her, replacing her prized computer along with many items from her Fleetwood Mac collection. They also provided gift certificates for her family members.

Their generosity to a girl they only knew via the Internet sparked a story that ran in the Butler County News and the Greenville Advocate in April 2002. But the story didn’t end there.

&uot;Someone called me a few months ago from the magazine…they wanted to do a story on me,&uot; explains Erica. The teen found herself being interviewed and photographed yet again n only this time for a national audience.

Coincidentally, the magazine came out the very week Erica went to see her beloved Mac performing in Birmingham.

&uot;The concert was wonderful. I cried when they came onstage, the first time Stevie talked, when they performed ‘Landslide’, ‘Gypsy’…it was an unforgettable experience. The most amazing thing about the concert was after a while your heart was beating in rhythm with Mick’s drums,&uot; Erica recalls.

She definitely found herself in the minority age-wise at the event.

&uot;Somebody said, ‘Hey, aren’t you too young to be a Fleetwood Mac fan?’&uot; Erica recalls with a grin, adding, &uot;My mom says I was born out of my time anyway.&uot;

Erica got another thrill when she and boyfriend Chad walked to the area where the limos would be leaving following the concert.

&uot;It was after 11:30 p.m. and the garage door opened…she [Stevie Nicks] had the window a little less than halfway down. She looked in my direction, smiled and waved—I froze.

I was less than two feet away from the incomparable Stevie Nicks and I FROZE,&uot; she recalls with a sigh.

Erica managed to regain her normal exuberance moments later and yelled out greetings to Stevie’s band mates, Mick Fleetwood and John McVie as their limo pulled away. &uot;John looked straight at me and gave me the biggest smile!&uot; she says.

Erica’s magazine story is now posted on the front page of the official Stevie Nicks fan club website, Nicksfix.com. Since her further brush with fame, she says she has gotten many e-mails from fellow Nicks and Mac fans—even some offering her bootleg copies of performances.

&uot;I just said, ‘Oh, thanks but no thanks—that’s OK,’&uot; Erica says with a shrug and an impish smile.

Erica, who has expressed interest in becoming an entertainment journalist one day, confesses she and her family are still amazed at the generosity of those who reached out to help them after the devastation of the tornado.

&uot;It is proof that good things come out of bad…only next time Erica wants to go and get famous, I asked her to leave the tornado part out of it, please,&uot; joked her mom, Tammie.

And, who knows, we may hear yet more of the Knight-Nicks connection. &uot;The webmaster at Nicks Fix is forwarding the story on to Stevie’s assistant!&uot; an excited Erica says. &uot;Even if I never get to meet Stevie to face to face, I’ll just be glad I was able to sing ‘in person’ with her during ‘Landslide’,&uot; she adds.

To visit the site and read Erica's story, go to http://www.nicksfix.com or, more specifically, to http://nicksfix.com/article womans world june 10 2003.jpg. Erica also invites anyone who would like to discuss all things Stevie and Fleetwood Mac with her to e-mail her at nicksillume@hotmail.com

&uot;I love spreading the word about Stevie and the Mac…give me time and I can probably turn anyone into a fan,&uot; she notes with confidence.