HomeEntertainmentMusicThe Chicks Reveal How Songs Like ‘Goodbye Earl’ and ‘Landslide’ Shaped Their Musical Legacy

The Chicks Reveal How Songs Like ‘Goodbye Earl’ and ‘Landslide’ Shaped Their Musical Legacy

by Joe Rutland
(Photo by Don Arnold/WireImage/Getty Images)

The Chicks have quite a history of delivering hit records. Two of their most recognized songs are “Goodbye Earl” and “Landslide.”

In this interview with Apple Music’s Zane Lowe, The Chicks band members Natalie Maines, Emily Strayer, and Martie Maguire share their thoughts about each one of these songs.

It’s worth pointing out that The Chicks have both country music and bluegrass roots within their music.

Chicks Release ‘Goodbye Earl’ As Part of ‘Fly’ Album

First up is “Goodbye Earl,” which was a part of The Chicks’ 1999 album “Fly.” The song won the Country Music Association Video of the Year and Academy of Country Music Video of the Year awards.

“To me, ‘Goodbye Earl,’ my favorite thing about that song is the video,” Maines said. “It was one of the most fun videos. That and ‘Ready To Run’ are, I think, my favorite two videos as far as the fun of making them.

“I think we did it in two days but it was a great two days, it was so much fun,” she said.

“We had heard that that song, which was written by Dennis Lindey, had been making the rounds in Nashville for years,” Strayer said. “And, I mean, I felt like no one else could have recorded that song but us.”

“We would sit in these A&R meetings,” The Chicks’ Maguire said, “and listen to all this music and it was like the songwriters in Nashville were trying to write us. Something they thought we would like or maybe that thought that they’d make the demos. Three-party harmony and banjos and fiddle.

“We wanted to hear something different because we were, like, listening to 50 songs a week trying, because we weren’t writing ourselves,” Maguire said.

Chicks Turn ‘Landslide’ Into Their Own Version of Song

Lowe said “Landslide,” which was released by The Chicks in 2002, “has to be the most famous cover of this song.”

“Having a baby and feeling emotional like, I’m getting older, too,” Maines said. “You know, you went through this major time of life and you immediately have to mature, grow up a lot when you have to look after somebody else.

So, yeah, that song, even though I knew that song my whole life,” Maines said, “it feels like it grabbed me differently at that point in my life that I just knew we could do a beautiful version of that.”

“We just felt free,” Maguire said. “We just wanted to turn in anything but a Top 40 hit record. (And) We wanted to just go down a rabbit hole. Got Natalie’s dad to produce, got our favorite bluegrass musicians. There were no rules. It was probably anything but trying to make a hit record and that was so freeing.”

Listen as The Chicks talk about these songs and others from their illustrious career.