The Dixie Chicks Defend Beyoncé Against Criticism, Brilliantly Cover “Daddy Lessons”
When Beyoncé released Lemonade last week, the world briefly stopped so that everyone could gather their feelings, reactions and lives, in that order. While the majority of responses to Lemonade and its genre-spanning visual journey were positive, there were naysayers in the hallowed halls of country music who claimed Beyoncé’s track “Daddy Issues” wasn’t country enough for their liking or respect. But, in an unsolicited act of solidarity that ultimately proved the critics wrong, the Dixie Chicks went hard for Beyoncé, and as a result you can now watch the Dixie Chicks cover “Daddy Lessons.”
The original criticisms claiming Beyoncé wasn’t country enough came last week from CMT (Country Music Television) critic Alison Bonaguro, who said she just couldn’t hear how it was country.
In an op-ed for CMT Bonaguro said:
“Sure, Beyoncé’s new album Lemonade has a song with some yee-haws, a little harmonica and mentions of classic vinyl, rifles and whiskey. But all of the sudden, everyone’s acting like she’s moved to Nashville and announced that she’s country now. Just because of this song ‘Daddy Lessons.”
As you can imagine, Bonaguro’s stank ‘tude towards Beyoncé was immediately met with backlash, this time from regular Beyhivers AND country enthusiasts alike.
WELP, CAT IS OUT OF THE BAG.
Bonaguro wasn’t the only one to voice her apathy towards the country-status of “Daddy Issues.” A critic for Saving Country Music echoed Bonaguro’s feelings, saying:
“Daddy Lessons’ is not country. And if you’re a country fan who regularly doesn’t listen to anything but country, there’s nothing to see here.”
Many Beyoncé defenders noted the racial hypocrisy in the criticisms, claiming this was another poor attempt to shut black musicians out of country music, despite the fact the genre originated with black musicians.
The large outpouring of support for Beyoncé caused a stir at CMT. They eventually issued a begrudgingly less critical post lauding Beyoncé’s talent while still not admitting “Daddy Lessons” was a solid country track.
The post written by CMT’s Claire Heinichen said:
“If any country influences can be detected within the lyrics, instrumentation and production, then God bless Beyoncé for following her creative muse. That’s what a true artist does. And if her creative muse ever brings her even closer to a full country project, then we’ll probably be hit with a real revelation. Given her artistry and success so far, there’s no genre Beyoncé can’t conquer.”
While this certainly gave her credit as a talented musician, it still feels like an attempt to police who gets to be country. This is where the Dixie Chicks entered stage left and signaled their support by showing, not telling.
What better way to express their respect and solidarity with Beyoncé than to remind audiences just how country that song was? If all it takes is the Dixie Chicks to play the same exact song in order for people to label it Country, then it certainly seems like race-driven discussion. Either way, this cover is great.