Taylor Swift has often cited The Chicks -- formerly The Dixie Chicks -- as one of her biggest inspirations, both in their music and their political outspokenness. She even enlisted the country trio on one of the most emotional tracks on Lover, “Soon You’ll Get Better.”
In a new Billboard feature story on The Chicks, Taylor articulates just how much the group’s unapologetic feminism made her into the artist she is today.
“Early in my life, these three women showed me that female artists can play their own instruments while also putting on a flamboyant spectacle of a live show,” Taylor says in an email statement to Billboard. “They taught me that creativity, eccentricity, unapologetic boldness and kitsch can all go together authentically.”
She adds that one of their songs in particular, “Goodbye Earl,” taught her an important lesson.
“Most importantly, they showed an entire generation of girls that female rage can be a bonding experience between us all the very second we first heard Natalie Maines bellow ‘that Earl had to DIE,’” she says.
As for The Chicks, they say they’re happy to pass the torch to Taylor.
“The power she has right now to change things is way beyond any power we ever had,” The Chicks’ Emily Strayer says. “She’s in a different position than we ever were.”
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