Some Things To Chew On For Lunch
(Image via AFP/Robin Beck. Love the laughter as the Chicks win Best Song of the Year for "Not Ready To Make Nice" at the Grammys.)
— Sometimes, you just have to have the last laugh:
After death threats, boycotts and a cold shoulder from the country music establishment, the Dixie Chicks gained sweet vindication Sunday night at the 49th annual Grammy Awards, capturing honors in all five of the categories in which they were nominated….
The Dixie Chicks took home Grammys for the top three awards: record, song and album of the year. Their “Taking the Long Way” (Open Wide/Columbia) won best country album and “Not Ready to Make Nice” also captured best country performance by a duo or group with vocal. That song is an unapologetic response to the furor set off in 2003 when the band’s lead singer, Natalie Maines, made an off-the-cuff antiwar remark to London concertgoers: “Just so you know, we’re ashamed the president of the United States is from Texas.”
But Sunday’s awards were the Recording Academy’s rejoinder to the country music radio establishment, which ignored the album. Accepting the award for song of the year, Ms. Maines joked, “For the first time in my life, I’m speechless.” But she found her voice on later trips to the stage. “I’m very humbled and I think people were using their voice the same way this loudmouth did,” she said, self-referentially, after “Taking the Long Way” was named album of the year. The Dixie Chicks’ sweep of the major Grammy categories served as a sharp counterpoint to their shut-out at the Country Music Association awards in November. The Recording Academy consists of members across the nation who work in all genres of music. The Country Music Association’s membership is concentrated among artists, engineers and executives tied to the Nashville establishment.
Sure, I know there is going to be a lot of kvetching in some wingnut circles about how liberal the music industry is, just like there's always grousing (no Shooter pun intended) about how liberal Hollywood is. But here's the bottom line: this particular Chicks album is musically very, very good — and rewarding them for it? Well, that wasn't all that tough a choice, apparently — the political furor was just so much icing on the musical cake. Skippy has some further thoughts, and Digby hits the nail on the head with this one. (And no article about music industry doings is complete without a link to Howie's piece on Joe Lieberman. Classic stuff.) Also, more from the AP here.
— And there are reports that The Police will have a limited tour, after their reunion at last night's Grammy's. (Yes, I know, it's not a political bombshell, but it's Sting news, so indulge me. Please, please, please come to a venue near me…)
— Bob Geiger has a very useful schedule up of Senate Hearings for this week. Some good stuff, including more Armed Services hearings on the depleted state of the Army and Marines and some environmental hearings on global warming.
— Carol Leonnig has a piece in the WaPo about the media's role in the Libby trial. And how it isn't pretty.
— BradBlog asks some interesting questions about Gannon/Guckert's seeming disappearance from several White House webpage files. Hmmmm…
— Over at Steve Gilliard's new digs, he catches a DKos article and screenshot of a Salon…um…gaffe, shall we say? Pam adds even more thoughts on a different article. Seems to me this is going to be a point of discussion for a while. Oliver seems to agree, with some thoughts here and here. And Taylor has some thoughts on Mike Allen and a bit of petty swiftboating.
What is catching your eye in the news today?