I live in Nashville. In 1998, the Chicks gave a free concert in Centennial Park. That was before they broke out. I walked over and took a look. "They are not going anywhere," I thought to myself. A year later, they were everywhere. I confess, I never cared for the Chicks. "Goodby Earl" was a song which glorified and condoned a wife murdering her husband. It was sick. I watched women perform it in karaoke bars. They were re-enacting the homicide in their minds and relishing it. I was surprised, however, when Natalie Maines made the comment in London in 2003 about President Bush. It must have slipped out in a moment of unconsciousness. It ruined a big career, or certainly changed it radically. I wonder what the other two Chicks thought about Natalie or what they said to her in private. The Chicks have made a comeback of sorts, hooking up with maverick producer Rick Rubin, the guy who produced Johnny Cash's last albums. The Chicks attain a rebel status in doing so but they are far from being Johnny Cash. I suspect their career will dissipate after the current album.
I have to agree. Natalie just doesn't seem to have the shut off switch most of us have installed. If it pops into her brain it falls out of her mouth. She had every right to say what she did, but to call foul when not everyone agreed with her is wrong. Now it seems like every time you turn around there is something else in the news about them putting someone down. With the new documentary coming out I'm afraid it could be the final nail in their careers coffin. They have said they don't want to be country, yet complain no one will play them..you can't have it both ways.
I think they're here to stay. <img src="/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" /> I guess we'll see.
They may come back from time to time, but their hit-making days are over.
I think they made the mistake of insulting their base of customers. They accuse the radio stations of censorship but the truth is the country audience doesn't want to hear them. If a radio station would make money by playing the Dixie chicks music, they would do so. It's the listeners who are "censoring" by not buying.
If they wanted to be rock stars probably no one would care what they say, or they'd cheer them on! However, they should recognize the fact that country listeners are more conservative. If they want to insult country listeners, then maybe they should try the rock and roll route.
I was never a fan of them but I don't think it's right for them to be claiming censorship when it's only the free market system at work.
I think they will survive but not be as popular as before. This happens to the best of them. Look at Shania she doesn't even make completely new CD's anymore just adds onto the old ones. The Chicks have been busy having and raising their families and took a long long break maybe too long. I really liked their first few songs and think they are really talented women
I agree they are talented, but I think someone has to step up and say to them that they need to think about things before they speak. This path they seem to be on isn't doing much but alienating the fans they have left. Yes, there are hard core fans, but from the forums I've read I almost think they are still fans because of the DC criticism of Pres. Bush. What happens when he isn't around to bash?
When Martie made the comment that they didn't want to be in the same CD player as Reba and Toby, it stirred a bunch more stuff up that I don't think they counted on. Then the comments on Howard Stern that I don't really think did much for their images either. Pam Anderson and Kid Rock didn't escape either. Who is next? Johnny Cash or another legend?
Free speech is wonderful, but you can't put it out there and not expect it to come back at you. I do believe they will still be around, but they aren't going to have the sucess they had in the early days of their careers.
I'm embarassed to say that they are from the same great state I was born in...if I would've had any of their cd's I would've thrown them away and if I hear them on the radio or see them on tv I change the channel.
I love the Dixie Chicks and am proud of them for speaking up. What good is freedom of speech if you only use it to say things no one would object to? It's there just for that purpose and people in the spotlight have as much right to it as the rest of us.
Their new album is excellent, and apparently not lacking in popularity since, just a week ago, I heard several local yound women using the song about the young waitress falling in love with a soldier and corresponding with him as one of their standards for street singing here in Norwich, UK.
As for whether the other Chicks agreed with Natalie or not, I think the song "Not ready to make nice." makes that clear enough. They are not sorry in the least for insulting Bush. Nor should they (or Kerry) be.
It would seem that they've simply moved on to a more free-thinking audience than they originally had, and a bigger one.
DJC in Norwich, UK
I understand what you are saying about freedom of speech, my point is that they don't seem to understand that it goes both ways. They can bash whomever they want, but when the backlash comes around and people say what they do about them, they get angry.
I don't support death threats or actions like that, believe me, but seriously if they would just let it die down, they might be in a better position. Country music artists know how conservative most listeners are and that there is a time and place for things to be said. A concert is not the place to shove your political views down a fans throat. Even Barbara Striesand is catching flack for political views during her concerts. Fans are tired of it, that isn't what they paid their hard earned money for, they paid for entertainment.
If any entertainer wants to spout off their political views, do it during a fund raiser or at least let people know before the tickets are purchased that you are going to be a political mouthpiece, that way the fan can make a choice as to whether they want to spend THEIR money to hear the artists views or not. Personally, I don't think politics need to be a part of concerts, the artist is there to entertain.
Their album released this year has achieved a platinum certification by the RIAA for sales topping 1 million units - in the US alone. World wide sales are well over 2,000,000 units.
Taking The Long Way has the highest-charting debut numbers of any album in the Dixie Chicks' career.
Oh yeah, their careers are going to hell. Dissipating after this album? Phfft.
I know their album has done well to a point, not as well as previous ones have tho. That seems to be the way it is going for more artists these days. But when you have to totally reconstruct an announced tour and dates because you can't sell tickets, that has to tell you something is wrong. They are doing well with concerts in Canada, England and Australia from reports I have read, but sales in the States haven't done quite so well. Maybe if they had gone with smaller venues here they would have done better, but going for the big venues they are used to isn't going happen with the history they have at the moment.
Little or no radio play has to have hurt them, that isn't blacklisting by the stations, that is the listeners calling in and saying they don't want to hear them. Stating that you don't want to be country and never really did leaves them in a gray area, I would think, where do they want to be played? Rock, Pop or Adult Cont. stations? Have those stations jumped in to start playing them?
A talented group of ladies, like I have said before, that have made some mistakes yet don't seem to have learned from them. You can't deny that Country music is very conservative and the listeners tend to hold a grudge when they feel like they have been wronged.
Kathy, you seem to think that the US is still the biggest market for things. Not true any more. Also, with the amount that the dollar has fallen in the exchange rates with the Euro, the Yen, the Yuan, and the Pound, concerts in other places bring in much more per attendee than US concerts. as I said, they've simply moved on to a more appreciative audience. Not their loss. Yours.
Besides, what happens as the country slowly realizes that they were right all along?
DJC in Norwich, UK
"I know their album has done well to a point, not as well as previous ones have tho"
I'm sorry - perhaps you missed when I reported "Taking The Long Way has the highest-charting debut numbers of any album in the Dixie Chicks' career."
That means the album has done better than previous albums.
I will note that all reports that i can find on the 'net about slow ticket sales are from June - before the tour. I find no reports that claim after-the-fact- that any concert was unsuccessful. They are in fact, still on tour.
I'm not talking about debuting, I'm talking about the total numbers, the numbers are down from previous sales, as they are for most artists.
Yes, they are still on tour, but have had to revamp the schedule and cancel a ton of shows in states they didn't expect a problem. They have spent most of the time out of the States doing concerts on dates that originally were scheduled for different areas of the US. Their core fan base is/was in the US, because they have chosen to be more political it seems they are doing better overseas than here now.
I understand the States are not the be all end all, but that happens to be where I live. I could care less that they made the comment 3 years ago, I do care when they start insulting the fans here that have given them their hard earned money in the way of buying CDs, going to concerts and supporting the career they once had in the States. I do care when they start to insult other artists that are out there doing their jobs and entertaining. This is just my opinion.
I enjoy music, I love country music, I don't enjoy politics and what that has become. I try not to be biased when I write reviews. I have one coming up on the latest release from the DC and I do like some of the music on their new CD. I understand why they were upset about the death threats and some of the backlash, it was uncalled for, but even their biggest fans have to admit they brought some of it on themselves.
'I'm Not Ready To Make Nice' is a brilliant song. Fair play to them for standing up and speaking their mind.
The Dixie Chicks speak their minds to a fault.
This is a nice example of how human beings are screwed up. That a group's career was ruined just because one of them said that they are ashamed that the president is from where they are from is totally insane.