Song:Long Time Gone
Album:The Essential Dixie Chicks
The country music girl group Dixie Chicks successfully crossed over to pop with the 2002 CD Home. Long Time Gone was one of three top ten country hits to cross over to the pop top ten. It was not long after this that lead singer Natalie Maines criticized the US invasion of Iraq and got the group in hot water. And though Natalie says she doesn't regret her comments, the events were chronicled in the 2006 documentary Dixie Chicks: Shut Up And Sing and indicate that the controversy wore them out. Dixie Chicks were formed in 1989 with sisters Martie and Emily Erwin, Laura Lynch and Robin Lynn Macy. the name Dixie Chicks comes from the classic Little Feat song Dixie Chicken. They were a bluegrass group at first and they all played various instruments. They released a couple of albums and Robin didn't like the mainstream country direction of the second album so she left in 1992. Legendary steel guitarist Lloyd Maines suggested his daughter Natalie could join the group. They recorded a third album with Laura as lead singer. They signed a development deal with Sony. But Marty and Emily were unhappy with Laura and Natalie replaced her in 1995. And that change made them a more mainstream country act and led to the success of their 1998 CD Wide Open Spaces. Number one country hits included There's Your Trouble and You Were Mine. The success continued with the 1999 CD Fly. They were probably the biggest country music act at this time. And keep in mind the girls still wrote songs and played instruments and Lloyd Maines produced. After a royalty dispute with Sony was settled out of court, the CD Home was released in 2002. Long Time Gone reached #2 on the Country Singles chart and #7 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was written by singer songwriter Darrell Scott who recorded it on his 2000 CD Real Time. So Dixie Chicks crossed over to pop and were on top of the music world. It all came to a screeching halt when on a Mar. 10, 2003 show in London, Natalie said she was ashamed President Bush was from Texas. This resulted in a boycott that was very effective. Rather than detail this, I suggest you watch Barbara Kopple's 2006 film Dixie Chicks: Shut Up And Sing as it is very instructive in how not to handle this kind of problem. After their 2006 CD Taking The Long Way underperformed commercially and ticket sales were flat on their tour, Dixie Chicks went on hiatus. Though they have toured and begin a tour in March 2014, Dixie Chicks have not recorded an album. You can get all their hits on this 2CD comp. Martie and Emily have recorded two CDs as Court Yard Hounds. Natalie released a solo CD last year. But no new Dixie Chicks music yet. I guess their story shows that when it comes to politics, musicians should Shut Up And Sing. Here's the video for Long Time Gone by Dixie Chicks.