Defiant Dixie Chicks blast Bush in new album

The Dixie Chicks' Natalie Maines is ready to take on President George W. Bush and his supporters again.

The Dixie Chicks' Natalie Maines is ready to take on President George W. Bush and his supporters again.

In a Time magazine article to appear Monday, she says she's taking back the apology she made after saying in 2003 that she's ashamed the president comes from Texas.

The original remark, made at a London concert just before the Iraq invasion, drew an immediate outcry from fans and commentators. Dixie Chicks album sales plummeted and many radio hosts refused to play their music. They even got death threats.

Maines was forced to deliver an apology in which she said: "As a concerned American citizen, I apologize to President Bush because my remark was disrespectful. I feel that whoever holds that office should be treated with the utmost respect."

But in an article titled Time 100: The People that Shape Our World, she says she's changed her mind.

"I don't feel that way anymore," she said. "I don't feel he is owed any respect whatsoever."

Maines joins a growing chorus of artists such as Neil Young in taking a stance against the Iraq war.

Time calls the Dixie Chicks "Defiant Darlings," saying "They'll sing, but they won't shut up."

Their newest recording, Taking the Long Way,contains an answer for their many critics, with the line "wouldn't kiss all the ass that they told me to." One of the tunes, Not Ready to Make Nice, has the Chicks singing,"I'm still mad as hell."

For band member Martie Maguire, the controversy over Maines' remark was a blessing in disguise.

"I'd rather have a small following of really cool people who get it, who will grow with us as we grow and are fans for life, than people that have us in their five-disc changer with Reba McEntire and Toby Keith," Maguire said.

A high-profile spat with Keith and with some very conservative country music fans followed the incident.

"We don't want those kinds of fans. They limit what you can do," said Maguire, whoshares the stage withMaines and Emily Robinson.

Taking the Long Way is due out May 23.