The Dixie Chicks for me are the best trio in the business for quite a long time. They were railroaded with the controversy. But, that stadium career killer produced one of the best crossover albums I've ever heard. From their first to last album, this band dramatically grew. I've seen them quite a few times and up until this last show at the PNC Center, they were always magnificent.
I started listening to Toby Keith when "How Do You Like Me Now" became a hit, and many of his earlier hits became favorites. His last great song was Courtesy of the Red White and Blue". From there his career while still afloat has taken a nove dive musically. Some of his hits after "Courtesy", I don't understand how they charted. While it was admirable that he played the inauguration the short set was lackluster at best.
But, this post is about "Courtesy".
The first time I saw Keith was at Annapolis MD Naval Academy and he did not disappoint. Great show. Minimal staging, just him, his band and the songs. For an encore he came out with just his guitar and said he'd written a song that he would probably never record, that it was personal and straight from the heart. He went on to perform "Courtesy" acoustically. It was MAGNIFICENT.
I saw him a year or so later, and "Courtesy" had now become part of his set. Full band, it was still cool. But, the intimacy of his acoustic version was far superior.
The very last time I went to see Keith, "Courtesy" had grown to epic proportions with fireworks, and all sorts of tacky stage props. The overall show was awful. But, this disaster took the cake. It sucked.
If the Chicks heard the original version of "Courtesy" like I did, there would have been no feud, it was a great song. The recorded version is very good. But, he really should have kept it, him and his guitar. When he was at his peak, he shouldn't been a little more particular as to what he recorded.