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Dixie Chicks Sweep The Grammys

February 12, 2007

THE TEXAS TRIO TRIUMPHS AFTER A TUMULTUOUS JOURNEY 

It took only four years (and the death of over 3,100 American troops) to convince members of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences the Dixie Chicks were right (and Nashville was wrong) when it came to the US invasion of Iraq.  The group (consisting of members Natalie Maines, Emily Robison, and Martie Maguire) swept all-five of their categories, virtually brushing off the cold shoulder many country radio stations have given them since early 2003.  But don’t expect this victory to change any minds…

Conservative critics would like us to think these five Grammys were simply recognition of their musical talents and not meant as support for their album’s message.  As far as I know, the Grammys are more than a talent show or popularity contest (I believe that show is called American Idol.)  It serves as a venue where members of the recording industry recognize the fruits of their peers labor. 

None of the awards the Dixie Chicks received (Album of the Year, Country Album of the Year, Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Country Performance by a Duo or Group With Vocal) were given solely for their musicianship.  They certainly performed with great skill on the record, but they were rewarded for the whole picture–the music and the words.  By choosing to discount those words because you disagree with their political beliefs, you miss the entire point of the record. 

If the Dixie Chicks had simply sold the most albums or had an abundance of success when Taking The Long Way was originally released, you could write off these Grammys as recognition of those accomplishments, but they hadn’t (a fact made perfectly clear in the 2006 documentary Shut Up and Sing.)  They won Sunday night because they chose to exercise their freedom of speech (the same freedom that caused them so much trouble to begin with)  and used their album to confront the people who had wished them ill (both personally and professionally) when they voiced their displeasure towards President Bush’s build-up to war with Iraq.  If that doesn’t merit some kind of recognition, why hand out Grammys in the first place?

I cannot think of a better use for recorded music.

OTHER GRAMMY HIGHLIGHTS (AND LOWLIGHTS)

  • The choice to go without a host was good one…
  • The Police opened the broadcast by performing their hit “Roxanne”.  Sting looked like a Chippendale dancer with his buff arms and black vest while his band mates Andy Summers and Stewart Copeland chose to look their age.
  • Who wouldn’t want to be Justin Timberlake or John Mayer for a day?  And they used to say more ‘tail’ than Sinatra…
  • I have to admit I got a little choked up when they put James Brown’s cape on that mic stand.  Never have I been so moved by a piece of clothing…
  • Rascal Flats proved that you can always make an Eagles song worse than it already is…
  • Could someone explain to me why Al Gore had to make an appearance?  He’s supposed to cut down on greenhouse emissions, not add to them…
  • Clips of Shakira’s performance should be offered to impotent men as a safe alternative to Viagra…

Can you imagine how they’ll manage to ruin next year’s 50th annual Grammy Awards?

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Jake permalink
    February 14, 2007 8:55 pm

    I’m interested to see what this adds to the dialog. Curious stuff in this independent film! :

    http://www.protestingthedixiechicks.com
    http://myspace.com/protestingthedixiechicks

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