dixie chicks on wave of popularity

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    Dubya moron is going DOWN!

    Despite political controversy, the trio's concert tour has been one of the top-grossing this year.
    July 16, 2003: 9:49 AM EDT
    By Gordon T. Anderson, CNN/Money contributing writer

    NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - The controversy over anti-war remarks by Natalie Maines has not diminished the ability of the Dixie Chicks to attract fans to the band's concerts.

    In fact, judging by sales figures from the group's ongoing tour, the Chicks may be more popular than ever. The band has joined a rarefied group of top-selling artists -- including long-established superstars like the Rolling Stones, Elton John and Billy Joel.

    The Dixie Chicks tour was the third-highest-grossing concert series in the world during the first half of 2003, according to figures recently released by Pollstar, the concert industry's leading trade publication.

    The female trio took in $35.1 million in box-office revenues. Since the Chicks charge much lower prices than the Stones and Elton/Billy tours, they actually sold more tickets -- about twice as many as the Stones and 25 percent more than Sir Elton.

    "Nobody would say it's a good career move to do what they did," says Gary Bongiovanni, Pollstar's editor-in-chief. "But it may have inadvertently had a positive net result for the Dixie Chicks, because it exposed them to a much broader audience than just country music fans."

    Some 582,000 people went to see the Chicks during the period. That's more than any other band besides Kenny Chesney, a country-music star whose tickets are far less expensive.
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