|Birth name||Natalie Louise Maines|
|Also known as||Natalie Pasdar|
|Born||October 14, 1974|
Lubbock, Texas, U.S.
|Instrument(s)||Vocals, guitar, bass|
|Member of||The Chicks|
In 1995, after leaving Berklee College of Music, Maines was recruited by the Dixie Chicks to replace their lead singer, Laura Lynch. With Maines as lead vocalist, the band earned 10 Country Music Association Awards and 13 Grammy Awards for their work between 1998 and 2007.
In 2006, with Maines still acting as lead singer, the Dixie Chicks released Taking the Long Way. The album subsequently won five Grammy Awards (including Album of the Year). The Chicks album Gaslighter was released on July 17, 2020. Maines released a solo album, Mother, on May 7, 2013.
Maines was born in Lubbock, Texas, to country musician and producer Lloyd Maines and Tina May Maines. She attended Nat Williams Elementary School in Lubbock, where her second grade teacher recalls being told by Maines during a math lesson, "Teacher, I don't need to learn this stuff—I'm gonna be a star." Maines was a cheerleader while attending O. L. Slaton Junior High School, and graduated in 1992 from Lubbock High School where she had participated in the school choir. Maines has described growing up in conservative Texas, saying "I always rebelled against that. My parents sent me and my sister to public minority schools so I always felt like a hippie and a rebel. ... As a teenager I always loved not thinking in the way I knew the majority of people thought. I always stood up for minorities. ... I've always stood up for homosexuals. I just always had these really strong convictions about doing so."
Following the completion of high school, Maines attended several colleges. She spent two semesters pursuing an undeclared major at West Texas A&M where her studies focused heavily on radio, then a year and a half at South Plains College. One of Maines's instructors at South Plains, and a former member of The Maines Brothers Band, Cary Banks, recalled "She was mostly into rock'n'roll, rhythm and blues ... alternative rock." When Banks encountered Maines on campus, he said that she usually needed to vent a little steam. "She would get into a lot of political arguments" at the predominantly Republican school, and was a fan of Texas Governor Ann Richards. "She's always been opinionated and hardheaded like her dad." In December 1994, Maines auditioned for and received a full vocal scholarship to Berklee College of Music. She pursued the diploma program at Berklee but dropped out before the completion of her studies. Even though Maines is from Lubbock, home of Texas Tech University, she attended only one class at the school, a 1995 summer course in "Introductory Wildlife".
Maines's first professional recording was lead vocals on the song "White Women's Clothes" on Andy Wilkinson's album "Charlie Goodnight's Life in Poetry and Song." Maines's first commercially released work was background vocals on Pat Green's debut album, Dancehall Dreamer, produced by her father Lloyd Maines and released in 1995. At the end of 1995, at age 21, Maines joined the all-female country music band, the Dixie Chicks, which had been performing since 1989, but which had been unsuccessful in gaining more than local attention. Maines replaced founding lead singer Laura Lynch. She plays guitar and bass in concert in the band.
Maines co-wrote four tracks for the Dixie Chicks' first three albums, including the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart number one hit "Without You" on Fly. Maines was a primary songwriter on all 14 tracks of the band's 2006 album Taking the Long Way which peaked on the Billboard 200 chart at No. 1. Taking the Long Way has the Billboard Hot 100 single "Not Ready to Make Nice", (Maines, Strayer, Erwin, Wilson) hitting No. 4 and for which the band won the songwriting Grammy Award, for Song of the Year. Maines considers the songwriting she did for Taking the Long Way "pure therapy" after the controversy that ensued over a comment Maines made from the stage in London that criticized U.S. President George W. Bush. "Everything felt more personal this time", Maines said about the album, "there's just more maturity, depth, intelligence. ... [These songs] feel more grown-up."
Maines collaborates with other musical artists, both as a member of the Dixie Chicks and an individual singer. The Dixie Chicks first worked with Sheryl Crow in 1999 while performing for the concert tour Lilith Fair. Since then, the Dixie Chicks have worked with Crow on her Sheryl Crow and Friends: Live from Central Park album, a Crow remixed version of "Landslide" performed by the Chicks, and the Dixie Chicks' song "Favorite Year" from Taking the Long Way. Maines has performed with artists including Pat Green, Charlie Robison, Yellowcard, Stevie Nicks, Patty Griffin, Neil Diamond, Eddie Vedder, Pete Yorn and Ben Harper.
On May 7, 2013, Maines released a solo album entitled Mother. This was Maines's first album since the Dixie Chicks hiatus started in 2007. The album was co-produced by Ben Harper. The album contains Maines's interpretation of several cover songs, including Pink Floyd's "Mother", Eddie Vedder's "Without You", and Jeff Buckley's "Lover, You Should've Come Over". She also sings about motherhood, feminism, and painful relationships.
Maines has participated in various fundraising and awareness events. They include:
- Legendary Bingo (August 23, 2007): Maines participated in "Legendary Bingo", a US bingo game hosted by drag queens and held weekly in Los Angeles. Proceeds from the event go to special charity interests; when Maines participated in the event, the proceeds benefited the "Voice for the Animals Foundation".
- St. Jude Benefit (June 12, 2008): Maines attended "Scrabble Under The Stars" in Beverly Hills, California. The event benefits St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Scrabble boards autographed by celebrity attendees, including Maines, were auctioned through June 30, 2008.
- David Lynch Foundation: Maines with the Dixie Chicks was the headline performer at a benefit night honoring Rick Rubin at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in February 2014.
Feud with Toby Keith
Maines had a public feud with fellow country music superstar Toby Keith over the 2002 chart-topping country hit "Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue", as well as a comment Maines made about U.S. President George W. Bush during a March 2003 Dixie Chicks concert in London.
Maines publicly criticized Keith's song "Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue" by saying, "I hate it. It's ignorant, and it makes country music sound ignorant. It targets an entire culture—and not just the bad people who did bad things. You've got to have some tact. Anybody can write, 'We'll put a boot in your ass.'" Keith responded by belittling Maines's songwriting skills with, "I'll bury her. She has never written anything that has been a hit" and, "That's what I do—I write songs."
After Maines commented at a March 2003 Dixie Chicks concert at the Shepherd's Bush Empire theatre in London that the Chicks didn't want the Iraq War and were "ashamed" President Bush "was from Texas", Keith's 2003 "Shock'n Y'all" tour began displaying a backdrop showing a doctored photo of Maines with Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. Shortly thereafter, on May 21, 2003, Maines wore a T-shirt with the letters "F.U.T.K." written on the front while performing for the Academy of Country Music Awards broadcast. The Dixie Chicks website stated that the letters stood for "Freedom, United, Together in Kindness". Some saw it as a veiled insult directed at Keith.
In August 2003, Keith publicly declared that he was done feuding with Maines, explaining, "You know, a best friend of mine ... lost a two-year-old daughter to cancer. ... [Recently] I saw ... a picture of me and Natalie and it said, 'Fight to the Death' or something. It seemed so insignificant. I said, 'Enough is enough.' ... People try to make everything black and white. I didn't start this battle. They started it with me; they came out and just tore me up. One thing I've never, ever done, out of jealousy or anything else, is to bash another artist and their artistic license."
In the 2006 documentary Dixie Chicks: Shut Up and Sing, backstage footage prior to her appearance wearing the F.U.T.K. shirt recorded the conversation between Maines and Simon Renshaw and confirmed that the original intent of the shirt was in response to Keith's criticism of her: the letters stood for "Fuck You Toby Keith". As of January 2007, Keith continued to refuse to say Maines's name and argues that the doctored photo was intended to express his feeling that Maines's criticism was tyrannical and a dictator-like attempt to squelch Keith's free speech.
Iraq War criticism and aftermath
On March 10, 2003, nine days before the invasion of Iraq, the Dixie Chicks performed at the Shepherd's Bush Empire theater in London, England, UK. It was the first concert of their Top of the World Tour in support of their sixth album, Home. Introducing their song "Travelin' Soldier", Maines told the audience the band they did not support the upcoming Allied invasion of Iraq and were "ashamed" that President George W. Bush was from Texas.
Many American country music listeners supported the war, and Maines's remark triggered a backlash in the United States. The Dixie Chicks were blacklisted by thousands of country radio stations, and the band members received death threats. Maines issued an apology, saying her remark had been disrespectful; in 2006 she rescinded the apology, saying she felt Bush deserved no respect. The backlash damaged sales of their music and sales of their next album and tour.
At the first US concert after Maines's comment, she said from the stage, "They told me that you may not come, but I knew you'd come because we have the greatest fans in the whole wide world." Despite fan turnout at concerts, the Dixie Chicks began receiving death threats as circulation of the comment increased. Subsequently, security was heightened at all concert venues and metal detectors were installed where possible. A death threat directed at Maines was received prior to the Chicks' concert of July 6, 2003, in Dallas, Texas. Maines described the threat as "scary because ... it wasn't just somebody wanting to write a hate letter. ... It was somebody who obviously thought they had a plan." Security was heightened for the trip to and from the concert venue as well as at the arena.
On May 21, 2006, while promoting the release of the album Taking the Long Way, Maines recanted her 2003 apology to President Bush, saying, "I don't feel that way anymore. I don't feel he is owed any respect whatsoever. ... If people are going to ask me to apologize based on who I am ... I don't know what to do about that. I can't change who I am."
Maines says she is not looking for more battles but that "The Incident," as it is referred to by the Chicks, reminded her of how she "felt in high school: to be angry, to be sure that you're right and that the things you do matter. You don't realize that you're not feeling those feelings until you do. And then you realize how much more interesting life is."
Two 2006 documentaries, Protesting the Dixie Chicks and Shut Up And Sing, deal with the controversy surrounding Maines's comment and the ensuing fallout. In an interview with The Daily Telegraph on June 15, 2006, regarding the fallout from her comment, Maines again stirred up controversy by stating:
The entire country may disagree with me, but I don't understand the necessity for patriotism; Why do you have to be a patriot? About what? This land is our land? Why? You can like where you live and like your life, but as for loving the whole country ... I don't see why people care about patriotism.
In 2007, the Dixie Chicks won three Grammys for "Not Ready to Make Nice" and two Grammys for Taking the Long Way, receiving all five Grammys for which they were nominated. This was seen by some as vindication for the Dixie Chicks, who were shunned by country radio programmers after Maines's remarks about President Bush. As the Dixie Chicks accepted the album of the year award, Maines said, "I think people are using their freedom of speech with all these awards. We get the message."
West Memphis Three lawsuit
Maines and other members of The Chicks participated in a rally in Little Rock, Arkansas, in late 2007, in support of the West Memphis Three, three imprisoned men convicted of the 1993 murder of three young boys in West Memphis, Arkansas. At the rally, Maines made statements claiming new DNA evidence implicated Terry Hobbs, stepfather of one of the slain boys, and also posted a note about the presumed new evidence on the Dixie Chicks' website. Hobbs responded by filing a lawsuit claiming compensatory and punitive damages for "loss of income, injury to his reputation and emotional distress." The suit was dismissed, however, in December 2009. On August 19, 2011, Maines joined with Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder in Jonesboro, Arkansas, supporting the release of the West Memphis Three.
In 1997, Maines married her South Plains College boyfriend, bassist Michael Tarabay, and the couple moved to Nashville, Tennessee. Within two years they filed for divorce, citing irreconcilable differences.
Maines met actor Adrian Pasdar in May 1999 at the wedding of bandmate Emily Erwin to Charlie Robison. Maines and Pasdar married on June 24, 2000, at A Little White Wedding Chapel in Las Vegas. They have two sons. During her marriage, Maines referred to herself as Natalie Pasdar. Maines filed for divorce in July 2017; it was finalized in December 2019. The events leading to her divorce inspired multiple songs on the 2020 album Gaslighter.
|Title||Details||Peak chart positions|
|"White Women's Clothes"||1994||none||Charlie Goodnight: His Life In Poetry And Song|
|"Dancehall Dreamer"||1995||Pat Green||Dancehall Dreamer|
|"Snowing on Raton"||1997||George's Bar|
|"The Wedding Song"||2001||Charlie Robison||Step Right Up|
|"Too Far From Texas"||Stevie Nicks||Trouble in Shangri-La|
|"Abilene"||2002||Sheryl Crow||C'mon, C'mon|
|"El Cerrito Place"||2004||Charlie Robison||Good Times|
|"Mary"||2005||Patty Griffin||Songs for Tsunami Relief: Austin to South Asia|
|"How I Go"||2006||Yellowcard||Lights and Sounds|
|"The Man"||Pete Yorn||Nightcrawler|
|"Don't Mean Nothing"||Westerns EP|
|"Another Day (That Time Forgot)"||2008||Neil Diamond||Home Before Dark|
|"God Only Knows"||2011||none||Big Love|
|"Golden State (Live)"||2012||Eddie Vedder||Golden State (Live)|
|"Mother"||2013||none||West of Memphis: Voices for Justice|
|"Love Without Fear"||2014||Dan Wilson||Love Without Fear|
|"The Wayfaring Stranger"||2015||Robert Earl Keen||Happy Prisoner: The Bluegrass Sessions|
|"Who I Want You To Love"||Bleachers||Terrible Thrills, Vol. 2|
|"Knockin' At My Door"||2016||Smooth Hound Smith||Sweet Tennessee Honey|
|"The Boots That Got Us There"|
- Dickerson, James L. (2000). Dixie Chicks: Down-Home and Backstage. Dallas, Texas: Taylor Trade Publishing. ISBN 978-0-87833-189-5.
- "Monitor". Entertainment Weekly. No. 1228/1229. Time Inc. October 12–19, 2012. p. 23.
- Jurek, Thom. "Natalie Maines Biography". AllMusic.com. Retrieved July 4, 2017.
- "Play at School". American Music Conference. Archived from the original on September 28, 2007. Retrieved April 15, 2007.
- Heysen, Kristen. (October 8, 2006) Not ready to make nice AdelaideNow. Retrieved April 3, 2007.
- Davis, Rob. "Dixie Chicks FAQ No. 30". Retrieved April 12, 2007.
- "Dixie Chicks: Singles". Billboard. Archived from the original on September 29, 2007. Retrieved June 17, 2007.
- Burkeman, Oliver (March 25, 2006). "Dixie Chicks turn death threats to song". The Guardian. Retrieved March 18, 2007.
- Cohen, Jonathan (March 10, 2006). "Dixie Chicks Get Personal On 'Long Way'". Billboard. Retrieved June 1, 2007.
- Rosen, Craig (December 3, 1999). "Dixie Chicks And Sheryl Crow Prove They're Gutsy Women". Yahoo!Music. Retrieved June 1, 2007.
- "A jewel of an interview – The Howard Stern Show". Howardstern.com. May 24, 2010. Retrieved February 20, 2012.
- Stromblad, Cory. "Dixie Chicks' Natalie Maines Covers Pink Floyd's 'Mother'". Taste of Country.
- Maines, Natalie (December 18, 2012). "@JRig2010 @tray2276 May 7th".
- "Natalie Maines: A Country-Music Rebel Rocks On Her Own". North Carolina Public Radio. May 8, 2013. Retrieved June 16, 2013.
- "First Listen: Natalie Maines, 'Mother'". NPR Music. Retrieved June 16, 2013.
- "Natalie Maines: A Dixie Chick Declares War on Nashville". Rolling Stone. Retrieved June 16, 2013.
- "Bingo's No Drag For Dixie Chick Natalie Maines". Archived from the original on August 25, 2007.
- "Clothes Off Our Back Autographed Scrabble Boards". Archived from the original on July 7, 2008. Retrieved July 23, 2008.
- Willman, Chris. "Dixie Chicks, Russell Simmons Meditate on Rick Rubin's Greatness at David Lynch Foundation Event". Archived from the original on March 4, 2014. Retrieved April 27, 2014.
- LA Daily News. (August 8, 2002) Natalie Maines (Dixie Chick member) Bashes Toby Keith's Patriotic Anthem. Retrieved March 17, 2007.
- Buzzle.com. (June 5, 2003) Dixie Chicks vs. Toby Keith Accessed May 17, 2007.
- CMT.com. (December 6, 2002) Toby Keith Reacts to Maines's Comments in Upcoming CMT.com Interview. Retrieved March 17, 2007.
- BBC News. (June 3, 2003) Fresh Dixie Chicks row erupts. Retrieved March 17, 2007.
- Wolf, Buck. (April 26, 2005) Hilton vs. Richie: When Celebs Duke It Out – 7. Dixie Chicks vs. Toby Keith ABC News. Retrieved March 20, 2007.
- ContactMusic.com (August 29, 2003) Tobey (sic) Keith Ends Feud with Natalie Maines. Retrieved March 17, 2007.
- Kopple, Barbara; Peck, Cecilia. (2006) Dixie Chicks: Shut Up and Sing Documentary.
- Guzman, Rafer. (January 28, 2007) Toby Keith, angry American. Retrieved March 18, 2007. Archived May 16, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
- Dansby, Andrew (March 17, 2003). "Fans Turn on Dixie Chicks". Rolling Stone. Retrieved June 14, 2020.
- Campbell, Duncan (2003). "'Dixie sluts' fight on with naked defiance" Guardian Unlimited. Retrieved April 13, 2006.
- Clarke, Betty (March 12, 2003). ""The Dixie Chicks" concert review". The Guardian. Retrieved January 22, 2007.
- Sachs, Andrea (May 21, 2006). "Chicks In the Line of Fire – Printout – TIME". Time.com. Archived from the original on December 6, 2012. Retrieved December 26, 2010.
- "Dixie Chicks 'get death threats'". BBC News. April 24, 2003. Archived from the original on August 29, 2009. Retrieved March 2, 2009.
- "Dixie Chicks: Home". Pitchfork. Retrieved June 14, 2020.
- Goodman, Amy. (February 15, 2007) "Shut Up And Sing: Dixie Chicks' Big Grammy Win Caps Comeback From Backlash Over Anti-War Stance" Archived November 14, 2007, at the Wayback Machine Democracy Now!. Retrieved February 24, 2007.
- Mattingly, David. (May 2, 2003) Fans turn out, cheer Dixie Chicks as U.S. tour opens CNN. Retrieved March 20, 2007.
- BBC. (April 24, 2003) Dixie Chicks 'get death threats'. Retrieved March 18, 2007.
- Associated Press. (May 11, 2006) Dixie Chicks recall death threat Today.com. Retrieved March 18, 2007.
- Tryangiel, Josh. (May 21, 2006) Chicks In the Line of Fire. Retrieved March 18, 2007.
- Sweeting, Adam. (15 June 2006) How the Chicks survived their scrap with Bush The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 18 March 2007.
- Moody, Nekesa Mumbi. (February 12, 2007) Dixie Chicks lead Grammys with 5 awards Associated Press. Retrieved March 18, 2007.
- "Letter from Natalie Maines: WM3 Call to Action". Dixiechicks.com. November 26, 2007. Archived from the original on March 13, 2012.
- "Dixie Chicks singer sued for defamation". Archived from the original on December 8, 2008.
- Finn, Natalie (December 4, 2008). "Natalie Maines, Fellow Dixie Chicks Courted for Libel". E!. Retrieved December 7, 2008.
- "Defamation Suit Against Dixie Chicks' Natalie Maines Dismissed". CMT.com. December 2, 2009. Retrieved December 25, 2009.
- "West Memphis Three: Natalie Maines, Eddie Vedder Arrive at Court (Report)". The Hollywood Reporter. August 19, 2011. Retrieved September 22, 2020.
- "Dixie Chick Natalie Maines Weds Adrian Pasdar in Early Morning Vegas Ceremony" Archived December 18, 2010, at the Wayback Machine, NY Rock, June 26, 2000
- "Natalie Maines Gets Hitched", CMT, June 26, 2000
- Hatton, Spencer (November 26, 2006). "Why rent a castle when you've got the King?", Yakima Herald-Republic, p. B1.
- Dixie Chicks. Dixie Chicks: Taking the Long Way: Dates & Facts Dixie Chicks Official website. Retrieved April 19, 2007.
- "Dixie Chicks Singer Natalie Maines Settles Divorce From Adrian Pasdar" E! News, Retrieved August 26, 2022
- "The Dixie Chicks on the Price of Being Genuine" Archived June 12, 2022, at the Wayback Machine
- Hudak, Joseph (July 20, 2020). "The Chicks' Natalie Maines on Howard Stern: 5 Things We Learned". Rolling Stone. Retrieved January 18, 2021.
- Willman, Chris. "Dixie Chicks, Russell Simmons Meditate on Rick Rubin's Greatness at David Lynch Foundation Event". Archived from the original on March 4, 2014. Retrieved April 27, 2014.
Maines is a TM-er, it turns out. Eighteen years ago, she told the crowd, she and fiddler Martie Maguire went to learn TM together
- "natalie maines Album & Song Chart History – Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved October 21, 2013.
- "Natalie Maines Album & Song Chart History – Digital Albums". Billboard. Archived from the original on October 2, 2011. Retrieved October 21, 2013.
- "Natalie Maines Album & Song Chart History – Rock Albums". Billboard. Retrieved October 21, 2013.
- "Natalie Maines Album & Song Chart History – Tastemaker Albums". Billboard. Archived from the original on October 2, 2011. Retrieved October 21, 2013.
- "australian-charts.com – Australian charts portal". australian-charts.com. Retrieved October 21, 2013.
- Yadegaran, Jessica. (November 21, 2003) Andre 3000 Goes Pepto, Hilary Eats Trophy Nachos, Nicky Covers For Paris At VH1 Awards MTV News. Accessed May 4, 2007.
- "VH1 Big in '03: Honorees". VH1.com. Archived from the original on October 10, 2004. Retrieved July 7, 2020 – via Wayback Machine.