Today we were shopping at the Jupiter Tokyo store in the Matsue (Japan) rail station. This is a very sophisticated station with high end shopping and lots of good cafes (inc. Starbucks). The store was playing muzak. I heard the opening chords of a song that chilled me to the core and yet fired my heart. The song was Not Ready to Make Nice sung by Natalie Maines of the Dixie Chicks. (I’ve given you the link to a YouTube clip.)
This little story is important for four reasons. First, in a personal frame, the song and its motivation happened when the Scribers were faculty members at Texas Tech University in Lubbock TX. Maines hails from Lubbock.
Second, The Dixie Chicks were the hottest country act around. But Maines, from the stage of a European concert, unloaded on then President George Dubya Bush for his Iraq war that was based on what we would now call fake news.
Country stations across the United States have pulled the Chicks from playlists following reports that lead singer Natalie Maines said in a concert in London earlier this week that she was “ashamed the president of the United States is from Texas.”
Those remarks led to the demise of the Chicks as a star-line group - see, for example, Dixie Chicks pulled from air after bashing Bush, Saturday, March 15, 2003 Posted: 0045 GMT
Third, the music industry retaliated by giving a Grammy to the Chicks for the album containing Not Ready to Make Nice and lots of other bitter-sweet songs, like _Bitter_End_, dirge for lost friends.
Fourth, in hindsight we should have seen it coming. The Bushies were riding high and were getting away with everything. They got their war. And the Chick’s fans deserted them because they spoke the truth (and the Bushies lied). All that was the forerunner to the current split in America that was revealed by the election of a pathological liar who still commands support of those same people who ditched the Chicks.