When Beyoncé’s Lemonade premiered on HBO more than a week ago now (wow!), people went nuts for “Daddy Lessons,” the mid-album track that sounded more like country than R&B, and many on Twitter were like, “this is the year’s best country track!” Whether or not that’s true, the song is a jam, and it’s nice of Beyoncé to have broadened the reach of country-western music. And now the song has been embraced by the country establishment, specifically by the Dixie Chicks, who performed it at a show in Manchester this weekend.
Of course, calling the Dixie Chicks part of the country establishment invalidates the band’s willingness to brush against the expectations of Nashville’s Music Row and the red state fans that are typically thought to keep the cogs of country greased. The bulk of the controversy stems back to another show in England, actually: in 2003, while in London, the band’s lead singer, Natalie Maines, said that she was ashamed that Bush was from Texas — also the band’s home state. So, that’s all to say, it’s not without precedent that the Dixie Chicks waded into murky waters with a cover of Beyoncé’s “Daddy Lessons.”
Of course, it’s premature to call the waters murky, but, because Beyoncé’s Lemonade — especially the visual portion — is tied to black culture and is seen as an expression and celebration of Beyoncé’s blackness, it could be said that this cover maybe wasn’t the most sensitive move on the part of the trio. Still, all that aside, the performance is a pretty great, straight-up adaptation of the song.
Check it out below.