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Dixie Chicks Rock the Vote

Maines says a lot of good came from anti-Bush comments

July 22, 2003 12:00 AM ET

The Dixie Chicks are teaming with Rock the Vote to encourage young women to vote. The band unveiled the "Chicks Rock, Chicks Vote!" campaign on Monday at a press conference at the Hotel Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica, California.

"We always felt like we were searching for ways to make an impact outside of music," said singer Natalie Maines. "It's such a struggle because there's so many causes. I've been waiting for something that really grabs me, that I want to give a lot of time to and passion to."

Maines struck a political nerve in March when she told a London audience the Chicks were "ashamed" that President Bush is from their home state of Texas. At Monday's press conference, the singer acknowledged that the subsequent backlash and support served as a catalyst for the Chicks' involvement with Rock the Vote.

"I believe everything that's happened in the last few months happened for a reason," said Maines. "A lot of positive things have come from it, and this is just one of them. We're very dedicated and motivated about this now."

As part of the campaign the Dixie Chicks donated $100,000 to build a section of the Rock the Vote Web site devoted to providing information about election issues. The band will also actively promote online voter registration, and Rock the Vote street teams will provide registration opportunities at Dixie Chicks concerts.

Dixie Chicks' tour dates:

7/23: San Diego, Cox Arena
7/25: Phoenix, America West Arena
7/27: Las Vegas, MGM/Mandalay Bay
7/29: San Antonio, SBC Center
7/30: Houston, Compaq Center
8/1: Little Rock, AR, Alltel Center
8/2: Memphis, The Pyramid Arena
8/3: Atlanta, Phillips Arena
8/4: Nashville, Gaylord Entertainment Center

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Song Stories

“Bird on a Wire”

Leonard Cohen | 1969

While living on the Greek island of Hydra, Cohen was battling a lingering depression when his girlfriend handed him a guitar and suggested he play something. After spotting a bird on a telephone wire, Cohen wrote this prayer-like song of guilt. First recorded by Judy Collins, it would be performed numerous times by artists incuding Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker and Rita Coolidge. "I'm always knocked out when I hear my songs covered or used in some situation," Cohen told Rolling Stone. "I've never gotten over the fact that people out there like my music."

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