Sometimes America’s sweethearts go sour. By Morgan Wallen before The Chicks, the biggest names in country music have been at the center of some major controversies.
Natalie Maines, Marie Maguire and Emily Strayer ran into trouble in the early 2000s after sharing their personal politics on a public stage. While performing across the pond, the trio – formerly known as the Dixie Chicks – expressed their disappointment with the then president George W. Bush as he prepared to send troops to the Middle East.
“Just so you know, we’re ashamed that the president of the United States is from Texas,” Maines told the crowd in 2003.
The comment spread like wildfire and the 13-time Grammy winners subsequently faced industry repercussions. Their record sales slowed and their songs were blacklisted by the genre’s leading radio stations. Although she initially apologised, Maines told TIME magazine in 2006 that she had no regrets.
“I have apologized for disrespecting the office of the president,” she said. “But I don’t feel that way anymore. I don’t think he deserves any respect.”
After years away from the spotlight, the “Everybody Knows” artists made a big comeback in 2020, dropping the “Dixie” from their name amid the rise of Black Lives Matter protests in the US. have happened without their controversy in 2003 – Maines told me The protector the group had “no complaints” about their trajectory.
“It’s just not in our nature to think like that,” the singer said in July 2020. “It was a shame to hear that there was that kind of hate. But we had our ego cups very full. We weren’t grasping and desperate. ”
More recently, Wallen himself was suspended. In February 2021, footage surfaced of the “7 Summers” crooner using the N-word, prompting his label to briefly remove him from their roster. Despite not being played on some radio stations, Wallen’s record rose to the top of the charts amid the backlash.
The ‘Cover Me Up’ artist revealed in July 2021 that he spent 30 days in a treatment center after the scandal broke. ‘I did not mean it [the word] in any derogatory way,” he shared Good morning America at that moment. “I think I was just ignorant about it. I don’t think I sat down and thought, ‘Hey, is this right or is this wrong?’”
Scroll down to see some of country music’s biggest controversies over the years, from cheating to legal battles: