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Buy Music by the Chicks (and friends)

Where did they go?

In 1997, you could have walked into Bill's Records and Tapes (billsrecords.com) in Dallas, strolled over to the Local Music aisle, and bought all the copies you'd like of the Dixie Chicks' indie albums.

But those albums, issued by local imprint Crystal Clear, were on a five-year contract. By November 1998, the publishing rights for all the indie releases had reverted back to the Dixie Chicks -- just as their management was getting worried about a certain web site that was hosting a few sound samples (see the Cease And Desist section).

Needless to say, these gems of the Chicks' unique fusion of Bluegrass, Western, and Country are out of print. For a while, they would appear in Dallas-area used CD stores, only to be snatched up as quickly as they arrived. One CD Warehouse franchisee (who has since gone out of business) managed to get the last remaining stock from the Crystal Clear warehouse, and by mid-1999, all three were officially unavailable as "New".

But you can still find them... for a price.

While the Dixie Chicks' Sony releases (1998's Wide Open Spaces and 1999's Fly) are widely available at retailers like Wal-Mart and CDnow, their independent discs have not been available at retail since shortly after they hit big (see sidebar).

You can still find them -- if you have a fat wallet. Failing that, though, there are plenty of resources on the 'net to help you discover other artists who could be the next overnight sensation (ten years in the making). Jump to the Next Big Thing section for some suggestions.

The Fat Wallet section: eBay listings

Your best bet for finding your own copy of the pre-Sony Chicks releases is eBay (or one of their dozens of competitors). For reference, here are some prices that have actually been paid for the Chicks' back catalog. Click on the album or single name for more information about the release, and click on the eBay item number to view the auction, when available.

Last update: 8/30/2000. Note that eBay auction results can only be viewed for 30 days after they close, and they are only searchable for two weeks.

1990: Thank Heavens for Dale Evans
CD format:
$122.50 13 bids 08/11
$100.00 17 bids 08/15
$100.00 13 bids 08/20
$52.50 12 bids 08/28
$61.00 9 bids 08/29
$57.00 11 bids 08/29

Cassette format:
$26.00 3 bids 08/21

Search completed auctions for: +Chicks +Thank

& Lows
From $52.50 (8/28/2000) to around $200.00 (7/2000)
Search current auctions for: +Chicks +Thank

1991: Home On The Radar Range (Single)
None recently available

Search completed auctions for: +Chicks +Radar

& Lows
$80+ (for vinyl in 1999)
Search current auctions for: +Chicks +Radar

1992: Little Ol' Cowgirl
CD format:
$185.00 39 bids 07/29
$91.00 14 bids 08/16
$81.00 12 bids 08/20
$60.00 10 bids 08/27
$75.00 10 bids 08/28

Search completed auctions for: +Chicks +Cowgirl

& Lows
From $60.00 (8/27/2000) to $185.00 (7/29/2000)
Search current auctions for: +Chicks +Cowgirl

1993: Shouldn't A Told You That
CD format:
$57.50 13 bids 07/29
$61.00 14 bids 08/11
$51.00 16 bids 08/15
$66.00 10 bids 08/24
$48.00 23 bids 08/25
$100.00 17 bids 08/26

Search completed auctions for: +Chicks (Shouldnt,Shouldn't)

& Lows
From $48.00 (8/25/2000) to $100.00 (8/26/2000)
Search current auctions for: +Chicks (Shouldnt,Shouldn't)

1993: Domestic Science Club (10-track version)
Note: the 8-track version is often available for under 10 bucks
$86.00 18 bids 08/26

Search completed auctions for: "Domestic Science"

& Lows
See above
Search current auctions for: "Domestic Science"

The Next Big Thing section: The Alt.Country revolution

Here are some names you should know... but probably don't:

  • Mark David Manders
  • Slaid Cleaves
  • Kelly Willis
  • Ed Burleson
  • Pat Green
  • The Groobees
  • Bruce Robison
  • Jim Lauderdale
  • Lucinda Williams
  • Jack Ingram
  • Charlie Robison

Dedicated Dixie Chicks fans probably recognized Charlie Robison as being married to Chick Emily. He and the rest of these artists are paying their dues on the Texas honky tonk and high school circuit where the Chicks got their start.

You can check out the Chicks' memories of the road in the Chick Chat Archive. To learn about the rest of their musical generation, check out these resources:

  • CDnow, the Internet's Number One music retailer.
    The Internet has proven to be the antidote to the consolidation in the music industry. CDnow's encyclopedic collection of music includes everything from the hot-selling Dixie Chicks to Charlie Robison's indie debut Bandera, and even releases by startup groups like the Trailer Park Troubadours and the recently disbanded Meat Purveyors.

    And they offer the best periodic discounts in the biz! If there's a special in effect now, you'll see it reflected in the banner below.


    For more info about CDnow (including a disclaimer), see the bottom of this page.

  • Miles Of Music, Alt.Country experts with More Music to the Gallon.
    When Sony signed the Dixie Chicks to their new (or newly revived) Monument Records label, they were expecting the Chicks to join the growing but underappreciated ranks of Alt.Country artists like the Bottle Rockets and Bad Livers. To their surprise, the new-look Dixie Chicks featuring spunky Natalie Maines in place of the more reserved Laura Lynch caught the passion of pop's favorite demographic groups. But Miles Of Music knew the Chicks before they hit the big time, and have the albums... "Several copies of all three," according to their reply to my query. Unfortunately, I think even they have run out of Dale Evans on CD, but may have a few copies left on tape.

    They feature an extensive catalog of all types of Alternative Country, including "No Depression, Americana, Folk, Rockabilly, Bluegrass, and Pop." Good Music, they call it. They're one of the only online sources for releases by The Groobees, the group that first cut Wide Open Spaces before giving it to the Dixie Chicks.

    Miles Of Music

  • Village Records
    Also worth a visit is Village Records in Shawnee Mission, Kansas. Very fast email replies, and an extremely eclectic collection of "Folk Music, Americana, Country, Roots Rock, and Reissues." Former Dixie Chicks lead singer Robin Lynn Macy lives in Kansas now, you know...

  • Yesterday And Today Records
    And for something truly unique, visit Yesterday And Today Records in Maryland to order rare 45 rpm versions of Wide Open Spaces (b/w There's Your Trouble) and Tonight, The Heartache's On Me (b/w Give It Up Or Let Me Go). Dust off that old turntable and listen to the music the way your ears hear it -- analog style.


Why CDnow?

Two words: Customer Service. I've tried some of the other online music services, but nobody beats CDnow for making sure you know the status of your order at all times.

No other major online retailer that I've found lets you calculate all shipping costs, taxes, and discounts without even logging in! Most won't do this until you've given your credit card number or other personal information, or at least until you've said you're finished shopping. Only CDnow lets you shop on a budget in this way!

And CDnow is honest. They don't have the old Dixie Chicks CDs, and they say so up front. I recently ordered two Chicks discs from ktel.com, and wasn't told that the discs weren't available until after the rest of the order had shipped. Worse yet, the CDs are still listed on the ktel.com site!

I may go to an independent vendor from time to time, but I will never order from any major retailer but CDnow

What about that 7%?

I'm proud to be a member of CDnow's Cosmic Credit program, which gives me a 7% commission on any purchases made through my links. But I would still fully endorse CDnow, even if I didn't get a dime, for all the reasons noted above. If you feel that my recommendation is tainted by a conflict of interest, I invite you to visit CDnow through this link, which will not give me the 7% credit: http://cdnow.com/


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Last update: 08/31/2000 by Robert Brooks
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