The Chicks dropped the “Dixie” from their moniker and returned successfully fourteen years later with “Gaslighter,” their eighth studio album.
Natalie Maines, Martie Maguire, and Emily Strayer were kicked out of the country music scene in 2003 after Maines publicly criticized George W. Bush during a London concert, and on their new album, they don’t shy away from politics, taking aim at America’s political leaders’ incompetence and advocating for gun control. The most major lyrical throughline in “Gaslighter” is Maines’ marriage and divorce from actor Adrian Pasdar, which she recounts with unsparing precision, scorn, and wrath.
How Did They Meet?
Maines met Pasdar in May 1999 during the wedding of band member Emily Strayer to her first husband, Charlie Robison, according to People. The couple married in A Little White Wedding Chapel in Las Vegas on June 24, 2000. Maines and Pasdar have been married for 17 years and live in Los Angeles, Austin, and New York City. The couple’s two kids are Jackson Slade, 19, and Beckett Finn, 16.
Why Did Natalie Maines Divorce From Charlie Robison?
In 2017, Maines filed for divorce citing “irreconcilable issues.” The couple had a financial prenuptial agreement, and she requested joint custody of their children. Pasdar, who starred in the network TV shows “Judging Amy” and “Heroes,” however, questioned the validity of their prenuptial agreement and fought Maines over spousal support, accusing him of being “poor” and eventually demanded that Maines pay him $60,000 per month. Maines claimed in court that he was the primary “breadwinner” and that he had given up his career to care for his children. Maines, on the other hand, claimed that their prenup stipulated that her Dixie Chicks earnings belonged solely to her.
Pasdar tried to stop Maines and the Chick from releasing new music throughout their legal battle, saying that something in their songs breached their prenuptial agreement’s confidentiality clause. However, by October, they appeared to have reached a financial settlement, albeit the contents of the agreement were kept under wraps. Following a two-year legal battle, their divorce was completed on Dec. 19.
Maines’ target of wrath perhaps Donald Trump, perhaps Pasdar, perhaps both are referred to as a “lie,” “denier,” and someone who “broke” her in the lead single and title track from “Gaslighter,” a blistering narrative in which the target of Maines’ wrath perhaps Donald Trump, perhaps Pasdar, perhaps both is referred to as a “lie,” “denier,” and someone who “broke” her “Give me all my money, and you’ll joyfully go away,” Maines sings that’s exactly why you ain’t comin’ home,” one line in particular from a song about a mysterious event on a boat prompted a frantic internet search. They married in the mid-aughts, and internet dating was a big part of their lives. Pasdar had bought a boat called the “Nautalee,” which he named after Maines.
While promoting the album with a cover story for Allure magazine, the band gave their first official interview for “Gaslighter” in April. Maines, on the other hand, refused to comment on her lyrics, claiming “ongoing legal battles,” and danced around Howard Stern’s questions later when he went fishing for divorce rumors. “In our minds, the way we put it out on the record, it kind of takes you on a journey,” she teased the radio host about romantic songs.
When the entire album was published on Friday, fans were quick to point out that many of the song’s lyrics followed the rough waters of a failed romance. The aforementioned boat mystery resurfaces once more on the hilarious kiss-off “Tights on My Boat”
In the ballad “Everybody Loves You,” Maines wrestles with how she should feel about her ex-husband, asking, she wonders. “It’s my body, and I’m trying to forgive you,” she continues, “but I don’t want to It’s my body, and it despises you.”