Since The Chicks – consisting of Natalie Maines, Martie Maguire, and Emily Strayer – graced country music in 1997, they quickly became the leading country group of their generation. The Chicks songs that blended Texas swing, upbeat bluegrass, and pop harmonies became fan favorites and even transformed the sound and sensibility of the genre.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of The Chicks‘ greatest hits so far. Check out below to find out.
1. Not Ready to Make Nice
In 2003, The Chicks experienced a backlash after a critical comment Maines made about President George W. Bush during their Top of the World Tour in London. In the imminent invasion of Iraq, Maines remarked that the band is “ashamed that the President of the United States is from Texas.”
“Not Ready to Make Nice” was the band’s reaction to country music radio stations blacklisting their songs and was their way of expressing what they think about freedom of speech. The song won three Grammy Awards, including Song of the Year.
2. Wide Open Spaces
This song was written by Texas singer-songwriter Susan Gibson in a spirit of rebellion on her first return home after leaving the University of Montana. It features a youthful, romantic, adventurous sense of independence – which proved very popular among teenage girls. It has since become one of The Chicks’ signature tunes.
“Wide Open Spaces” comes with a music video where the trio performed in the Rocky Mountains. It won Music Video of the Year at the Country Music Association Awards.
3. Goodbye Earl
Due to its violent theme, some country radio stations hesitated to play “Goodbye Earl.”
In this song, The Chicks tells the story of a woman demanding ultimate revenge on a physically abusive husband, Earl. While the song is dark, the woman got her vengeance – thanks to her high school best friend, who helped her poison and kill Earl.
It was written by American songwriter Dennis Linde, who is best known for writing the Elvis Presley hit, “Burning Love.”
4. There’s Your Trouble
The Chicks scored their first No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart, thanks to “There’s Your Trouble.” Not only that, but the song also helped the trio earn a Grammy Award for Best Country Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal.
It was actually written by Mark Selby and Tia Sillers five years before they became a couple – so this sweet ballad definitely rang true for them.
5. Long Time Gone
This song was an instant hit! It tells the journey of a young person after moving to Nashville from his family farm to chase his dream of becoming a musician. However, he eventually went back to his hometown, settled down, and raised his family.
But what makes this somber ballad interesting is how it made references to various country legends in a unique way. The Chicks’ rendition took home a Grammy Award for Best Country Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group.
6. You Were Mine
Here’s another standout among The Chicks’ music catalog. Most parts of the song were actually written by Emily, while Martie provided the bridge – and it’s a very autobiographical one.
“You Were Mine” tells the breakup story of the sisters’ parents as well as their following divorce. In one interview, Emily said that their parents generally swept the song under the rug. While their parents knew it was about them, the family never talked about it.
7. Some Days You Gotta Dance
The song was earlier recorded by Keith Urban’s short-lived band The Ranch on their only studio album – but it only achieved commercial success when The Chicks released the song two years later, peaking at No. 7 on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart.
Amusingly, Urban played guitar on The Chicks’ rendition.
8. Cowboy Take Me Away
“Cowboy Take Me Away” has become a staple on The Chicks’ concert set lists and has since become one of their signature tunes. It was written by Martie about Emily’s boyfriend, country rocker Charlie Robison. Martie noted that her sister had been dating a bunch of guys she didn’t approve of. But that changed when she met Charlie. Martie even pictured him whisking Emily off into the sunset.
Indeed, the two married that year but sadly divorced after nine years together due to a conflict of personalities.
9. Travelin’ Soldier
“Travelin’ Soldier” was written and originally recorded by Emily’s then-brother-in-law, Bruce Robison. It’s a narrative tale about a shy, lonesome soldier and his beautiful relationship – despite the overwhelming distance – with a high school girl during the Vietnam War era.
However, the song ended miserably, with the soldier announced to be dead – and “a pretty little girl with a bow in her hair” was the only one who cared.
The song was written and originally recorded by Stevie Nicks with her rock band Fleetwood Mac and was featured on the band’s self-titled album in 1975. Nearly three decades later, The Chicks released their own version, with Natalie saying she was drawn to the song as she was then the same age that Nicks was when she first performed it.
The trio also performed the song with Nicks at VH1 Divas Las Vegas.
Some More The Chicks Songs That Charmed Us Throughout The Years
It’s absolutely hard to resist The Chicks’ charm. So, we gathered some more of their best hits. Keep on scrolling below.
So, what do you think about this collection of The Chicks’ songs?