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Cherry Pop

Title - ‘The Essential Dixie Chicks’ (Legacy)
Artist - Dixie Chicks

Kicking everything off with the orchestrally-backed, roaring on all cylinders 'Not Ready To Make Nice,' the release of 'The Essential Dixie Chicks', the career-spanning collection of chart-topping hits, classic tracks and personal favorites selected by the all-time top-selling female group themselves, certainly sets the pace early on.

After a few same-old-same old Chicks songs, it's the rousing, bible belt 'Lubbock Or Leave It' that brings our ears back to the first disc of 2 in this collection. The beautiful ballad, 'Lullaby,' as expected for all your Chicks fans, is one of the stands out here for sure.

The bouncy, fun 'Long Time Gone' middles this set out nicely, with it's violin and gentle guitar backing sweet, just sweet. The purely instrumental 'Lil' Jack Slade' poetic, the disc one ending 'Top Of The World' a calming, somewhat somber way to bring things to a close.

The second disc kicks off with family favorite, 'Ready To Run' before heading into 'Cowboy Take Me Home' and fan favorite 'Goodbye Earl.' With her lead vocals and her bandmates' harmonies and instrumental chops, Natalie Maines' voice can well become a little too much come the final song on disc 2, but collectively the group cut a new template for commercial country radio.

Finding favor with both the mainstream and traditionalist crowds, further songs on the second disc - the fast-paced 'Sin Wagon,' 'Without You,' hit single 'Wide Open Spaces' and the truly beautiful 'You Were Mine' - all go to prove that the Chicks have been around for way longer than we ever thought!

With songs culled from their multiple albums - such as Wide Open Spaces (1998) and Fly (1999) - these 2 discs feature hit after hit. Having won seven Grammy® awards, this Essential 2-CD set may well include all their biggest hits, but comes with some of their personal favorites too - the quite excellent 'Landslide' being one prime example.