Dixie Chicks - Shut Up & Sing

Behind the scenes with the Bush-baiting country queens

Shut Up & Sing

When Natalie Maines told a
London audience in 2003 she was
“ashamed” that President Bush
came from her home state of
Texas, the fallout almost destroyed
the Dixie Chicks, then the biggestselling
female band in history. It
led to boycotts by all-powerful
country radio in the US, with
outraged fans publicly burning
their CDs on a scale not witnessed
since John Lennon’s infamous
“bigger than Jesus” claim.

Barbara Kopple’s brilliant
documentary follows the trio over
the next three years as they
sustain their careers in the face of
tour sponsors on the verge of
withdrawing financial support and
frantic damage-limitation
proposals by their record label.
That such an innocuous remark
from an unlikely voice of dissent
should have caused so much fuss
is astonishing, but Kopple reveals
these three unassuming women to
be savvy individuals with clear
consciences and admirable ethics.
Uplifting and inspirational, even
the most committed country
music refuseniks will cheer the
protagonists on.

Feisty and funny throughout,
Maines is the star of the show,
unrepentant until the end. After
the film was completed, the
Chicks’ new material earned them
five Grammys, three for the
defiant Not Ready To Make Nice,
a song which sums up precisely
why they should be cherished.

5 stars 5 stars 5 stars 5 stars 5 stars

Momentum | MP 696 D

Reviewed by Terry Staunton
<< Back to Issue 341

You might also like: