With Gaslighter — the Dixie Chicks’ first album of new material in 14 years — postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic, the trio has slipped out a a second song, “Julianna Calm Down,” from the album, following the title track’s release in March.
The tune, out one day before the album’s original May 1 release date on Columbia, opens with a lovely, soothing vocal from Natalie Maines — backed only by an organ — as she name-checks a number of women, some of them relatives of Maines’ and bandmates Emily Strayer and Martie Maguire, as she doles out helpful advice. In each case, each woman is about to be left by her man, but Maines is there to remind them that better days are ahead and, more importantly, “Just put on, put on, put on your best shoes/ And strut the f— around like you’ve got nothing to lose.”
Though obviously not written about the pandemic, many of the words prove a salve to the current situation and global unrest, especially “Breathe/ It’ll be OK/ I guess this is the time to remind you/ Sometimes what’s going through your head is just a temporary situation and light will soon be shed.”
In a statement, Dixie Chicks stressed solidarity: “We can’t give you the full album just yet but, we also couldn’t let May 1st pass by without sharing a new song with you. So, here is track #9 “Julianna Calm Down” off GASLIGHTER. We hope it makes you feel empowered, smile, and strut the f*** around like you’ve got nothing to lose. We will strut through this time together.:
No word yet on a new release date for Gaslighter, which will be the trio’s first studio release since 2006’s Taking the Long Way.