The Return of Natalie Maines

Natalie Maines, former lead singer of the now defunct Dixie Chicks is making a musical comeback after 7 years. Her forthcoming album entitled Mother is due out May 7. The album is a solo rock album mostly composed of cover songs. The first single off the album is a cover of Eddie Vedder’s “Without You”. I have no idea what the rest of the album sounds like, but this song still has quite a bit of country rock feel to me that doesn’t seem to be a huge departure from what the Dixie Chicks were doing especially in their later albums. Of course that’s probably what you get when you’re covering a song off a ukelele album. Based on the list of tracks I’m guessing that many of the songs will have a folk/country rock feeling to them. I am not complaining because I like that style of music. I read or heard somewhere that Natalie Maines said she would never go back to country music after everything that happened with the Dixie Chicks, and yes most likely this new music isn’t likely to get played on country radio, but it’s not that big of a departure from country as I was imagining when I heard that. Whether rock or country or some influence of both I’m happy to have Natalie Maines back on the musical scene.

And speaking of the ill-fated end of the Dixie Chicks, this America is why we can’t have nice things. I will never, ever understand the crazy mindset of people who boycotted them and sent death threats etc. because Natalie Maines expressed her disagreement with George W. Bush’s invasion of Iraq. One of the things that you crazy “patriot” people should be loving about this country is the fact that we have the right to free speech, which means people are allowed to say things you disagree with. Whatever moving back into a happy place.

I also happened to hear today the fantastic Dixie Chicks song “Not Ready to Make Nice”, which is off their final album Taking the Long Way. Though I am not happy with the way things ended for the Dixie Chicks or the fact that they ended at all, this album composed of songs mostly inspired by everything that happened is wonderful and probably my favorite of all the Dixie Chicks albums. That time also led to the great documentary Shut Up and Sing, which you should really watch if you haven’t already.

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