The Chicks, formerly the Dixie Chicks, are one of the most important groups in modern country music, and one of the most controversial. The group formed in 1989 in Dallas as a traditional bluegrass group, consisting of four women, including multi-instrumentalists Martie and Emily Erwin, who would remain core members. They released a string of independent albums, but it wasn't until they lost two founding members and brought in Natalie Maines in 1995 that they began to define the blend of traditional and contemporary country that would launch them to commercial success. Their major label debut album, 1998's 'Wide Open Spaces,' placed several hit singles including "I Can Love You Better," the title track, "You Were Mine" and "There's Your Trouble," and sold 12 million copies, catapulting the group to instant stardom and critical acclaim. 1999's 'Fly' debuted at No. 1 and spawned more hits with "Ready to Run", "Cowboy Take Me Away", "Goodbye Earl" and "Some Days You Gotta Dance," selling 10 million copies and solidifying their position as one of country's leading acts. The group released 'Home' in 2002, returning more to their bluegrass roots for the album, scoring another hit with its lead single, "Long Time Gone." In March of 2003, during a concert in London during the run-up the America's invasion of Iraq in the wake of 9/11, Maines uttered the now-infamous words that would change the Chicks' career forever, saying, "Just so you know, we're on the good side with y'all. We do not want this war, this violence, and we're ashamed that the President of the United States is from Texas." The comment caused an enormous backlash, prompting radio stations to drop the Dixie Chicks across the board, while fans held gatherings to burn their CDs. They received death threats on their subsequent Top of the World Tour, and engaged in very public feuds with Toby Keith and Reba McEntire. The trio came out swinging with the first single from their next album, 2006's 'Taking the Long Way,' titled "Not Ready to Make Nice." The new album debuted at No. 1 and become one of the biggest successes of the year despite very little support from radio, and the Chicks undertook a tour that was successful despite smaller crowds than past tours. They won Song of the Year, Record of the Year and Album of the Year at the 2007 Grammy Awards, but the record was followed by a long hiatus during which Maines recorded a solo album, while the other members formed a duo called Court Yard Hounds. The Chicks toured with the Eagles in 2010, and announced their first full tour in years in 2013. The Long Time Gone Tour focused on Canada and overseas markets, but in 2016 Chicks fans in America finally got their wish when the trio announced their DCX MMXVI World Tour, which included a full North American leg with a slate of U.S. dates.
The Chicks Postpone More Shows, Natalie Maines Put on Vocal Rest
The Chicks have been forced to reschedule two more stops on their 2022 tour, due to Natalie Maines continuing vocal issues.
The Chicks End Indiana Show Early: 'We Will Be Back'
The Chicks brought their self-titled 2022 tour to Indiana, but just a few songs in, the set was cut short.
The Chicks' Divorces Taught Them to Write From Real Life
Plus, Natalie Maines and Martie Maguire explain how going through divorces at the same time helped them feel less alone.
The Chicks Will Work For Social Causes on Upcoming Tour
The trio is partnering with environmental nonprofit Reverb on their upcoming amphitheater tour.
Cody Johnson Covers the Chicks’ ‘Travelin’ Soldier'
It's a really powerful performance.
Remember When Natalie Maines Criticized the President?
What began as a random remark turned into one of the biggest controversies in country music history.
The Chicks Make Plans to Hit the Road for a Summer 2022 Tour
Patty Griffin and Jenny Lewis are joining the Chicks on the road this summer.
The Chicks, Stevie Nicks Join All-Genre Bonnaroo's 2022 Lineup
Bonnaroo is set to return in June 2022 after a two-year hiatus.
A Patriotic Hit Debuted the Same Day as the Dixie Chicks' Scandal
There were actually two big political news stories to come out of country music on March 10, 2003.