The Chicks had a lot on their minds on Tuesday night (July 21) when they Zoom’d in to join Andy Cohen on Watch What Happens Live. They talked about their new album, Gaslighter, but also dished on the Lady A naming lawsuit and — believe it or not — inviting Michael Jackson over for what turned out to be his final Halloween party.
Answering a fan’s question about how the late King of Pop ended up at singer Natalie Maines’ house in 2008, she said “friends of friends” knew MJ, and for several years, she threw some legendary Halloween parties at her pad. “I got called and asked, ‘Can we bring Michael Jackson?’” she said, of course giving the drop-by a thumbs-up and then letting Jackson’s security detail come to sweep the house for video cameras.
Jackson came with his children and mostly just watched them have fun, but Maines recalled that when he walked into the house across the dance floor, the DJ cued up “Thriller.” The Chicks’ road manager swiftly went over to scold the DJ for his party foul, only to find out that he thought it was just some dude in a costume.
In a lightning round of Chick Flick Off, the trio — which includes singers/multi-instrumentalists Emily Strayer and Martie Maguire — all gave a hard “no” to a question about whether they would let their music be used in a political campaign.
When Cohen wondered how they felt about Taylor Swift saying in her documentary Miss Americana that she feared being drummed out of country music — like the Chicks — when she began getting political, Strayer said she was “just proud of her … it’s good to see her as she becomes a young woman questioning these things.”
On a topic even closer to home, Cohen asked what they thought of Lady Antebellum changing their name to Lady A to get rid of the association to slavery. (The Chicks recently dropped the “Dixie” from their name for the same reason.) “I think it was the right move,” said Maines of Lady A’s decision, which has been met with serious pushback from a Black Seattle blues singer who has used the same name for more than two decades, resulting in a lawsuit from Antebellum against the other Lady A.
“I think it’s been very awkward and uncomfortable to have this whole lawsuit and it’s kind of going against the point of changing their name,” she added. As for anyone who has problems with The Chicks dropping “Dixie,” Maguire said, “We don’t care.”
After facing backlash from country fans for speaking out about former President George W. Bush during the Iraq War, Maines said things are so bad now under Donald Trump that she might “actually make out” with W. now.
“I don’t rethink that I didn’t want to go to war and that weapons of mass destruction were a lie,” said the famously no B.S. Maines about the anti-Iraq War comments she made in 2003. “But yes, it would be a huge love fest if I saw George Bush right now, because of where we’re at with this current president.”
Check out the full interview below.