On This Day: The Chicks ‘Fly’ Album Certified Diamond in 2002

by Clayton Edwards
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Let’s take a trip down memory lane. We’re going all the way back to 2002. It was a simpler time, if you think about it. Facebook wasn’t around to make you mad at your relatives. At that time, that’s what holidays were for. At the same time, not everyone had a phone in their pocket. I can still remember asking, “Does your phone get texts?” Oh, the good old days.

The (Dixie) Chicks dropped their second major-label album, Fly, in 1999. That album was packed to the brim with great tracks. Fly had tunes like “Goodbye Earl,” “Cowboy Take Me Away,” and my personal favorite, “Sin Wagon.” Natalie Maines has a killer voice. At the same time, the instrumentation in parts of the album puts their bluegrass roots on full display. In short, it’s a hard album to beat.

Apparently, millions of people across the country felt the same way. Just three years after the album came out, it was certified Diamond by the RIAA. Let that sink in. The Chicks’ second album was certified, Diamond. A Gold (500,000 sales) or Platinum (1,000,000 sales) record is a dream for many artists. However, these ladies bypassed that and took their album straight to the top. It takes 10 million sales to make it there. The official certification came on this day in 2002.

The Chicks Sell and Break Records

So, having a Diamond-certified album is a pretty big deal. What’s bigger than that? The Chicks did it twice. What’s even more impressive is that they did it back-to-back. About a year after Fly became their first album to sell 10 million units, their debut album caught up with it. Wide Open Spaces (1998) became a Diamond album in 2003.

That back-to-back success puts The Chicks at a whole new level of prestige. They are the only country music group or artist to have two back-to-back Diamond albums. At the same time, they are the only female group in any musical genre to achieve that feat. So, yeah, they’re kind of a big deal.

There aren’t many other country artists to achieve Diamond status. That may come as a surprise. However, the list of those who hold the distinction won’t come as a surprise at all. For instance, Garth Brooks has seven of them. Shania Twain has three Diamond-certified albums. Taylor Swift has one as well. Kenny Rogers rounds out the list. See, no surprises there at all.

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