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Stevie Nicks really didn't want to sing on John Mulaney's new Netflix special

John Mulaney, Jimmy Fallon
Photo: Andrew Lipovsky/NBC

“I love my own thoughts!,” was John Mulaney’s prime realization during one of host Jimmy Fallon’s little parlor games on last night’s Tonight Show, something that pretty much everyone on Earth has come to agree with since the former Saturday Night Live writer stepped out from behind the cameras. Well, nearly everyone, as Mulaney told Fallon that he got one of the most elaborately detailed “no”s in show business history from the manager of one of his musical idols recently.

Prepping for his upcoming Netflix special, John Mulaney & The Sack Lunch Bunch, a musical variety show featuring Mulaney, a bunch of little kids, and a throwback Sesame Street vibe, Mulaney was able to gather an impressive lineup of guests. Jake Gyllenhaall, Natasha Lyonne, Richard Kind, Broadway stars Andre De Shields, Annaleigh Ashford, and Shereen Pimantel—all solid gets. But, as Mulaney explained, one musical legend just wasn’t on board with his take on the days of children’s TV when, as he put it, “Art Garfunkel, and Grover, and a girl named Gina” would be leaning against a stoop, smoking, and learning lessons about the finality of death. According to Mulaney, he’d written a song specifically for Stevie Nicks to sing, and was attempting to chase the iconic chanteuse and “ghost in the wind” down when he finally got in touch with Nicks’ manager—who really, really wanted to explain exactly why her client did not want to do Mulaney’s song.

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Like, really wanted Mulaney to know, as the comic related in typically funny, self-effacing detail. Calling it “there greatest pass” he’s ever gotten in his career, Mulaney related the agent’s second-hand interpretation of just how not into Mulaney’s sense of humor Stevie Nicks was in relentless detail that, in Mulaney’s telling, was just the right combination of would-be helpful and tone-deaf for a killer late-night anecdote. Still, no hard feelings, as Mulaney said the agent was all for having Mulaney come hang out in Stevie’s back yard some time. He’s thinking about it—she really didn’t like his song.

John Mulaney & The Sack Lunch Bunch premieres on Netflix on December 24.

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Dennis Perkins

Contributor, The A.V. Club. Danny Peary's Cult Movies books are mostly to blame.