To quote Don Henley Sunday night as he announced another award for the Dixie Chicks, "Yeah!" Good for the girls! The Chicks, with their five-Grammy-winning album "Taking the Long Way," fired back a big fuck you to the Bush administration and bigots everywhere who vilified the group after lead singer Natalie Maines' harsh Iraq war criticism of President Bush back in March 2003. Maines had told audiences that "Just so you know, we're ashamed the president of the United States is from Texas." Well, back in 2003, some people actually still liked Bush, and called for boycotts and the ladies' heads. Funny what effect a few years has on the national pulse.
The Dixie Chicks--Maines, Martie Maguire and Emily Robison--took the Grammy in all five categories they were up for: record, song and album of the year; best country album; and best country performance by a group or duo.
The group's members were obviously quite moved by their tremendous vindication. "I think people are using their freedom of speech here tonight with all of these awards," Maines said. "We get the message. There's a lot of awesome music this year and fantastic performances. I'm very humbled. I think people were using their voice the same way this loudmouth did."
Robison acknowledged the stress the controversy placed on her family: "I think they're the ones who probably had it the hardest there for the last three years. I just wanted to recognize that we know what you went through."
Maguire said, ..."I think our core fans have always stayed true to us, and I want to thank them for staying with us. And we wouldn't have done this album without everything we went through, so we have no regrets."
Accepting their final award of the night, Maines thanked bandmates Robison and Martie Maguire for their support: "For the first time in my life, I'm speechless. Thank you Martie and Emily, for stickin' by me. I told you I'd take you to the Grammys. Stick with me. Thank you everyone. We are very, very appreciative and honored."
Success is the sweetest revenge. Here's to not just Maines' incredible artistic achievements, but her political prescience as well.
On another subject......we could use your help at The Adrienne Shelly Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated in my wife's honor to help carry out her spirit and passion, with the goal of providing film school scholarships and grants to women filmmakers. As many of you know, Adrienne was brutally killed here in NYC on November 1st. Please visit our website to learn more about our mission and to make a donation. Every little contribution helps preserve Adrienne's legacy, and to help create something positive out of this horrible tragedy. Thank you.