Erwin playing at SXSW, Austin, Texas in 2010
|Birth name||Martha Elenor Erwin|
|Also known as||Martie Seidel, Martie Maguire|
|Born||October 12, 1969|
York, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Genres||Alternative country, country, bluegrass, country rock, folk|
|Occupation(s)||Musician, songwriter, record producer, arranger|
|Instruments||Violin, viola, acoustic guitar, double bass, mandolin, mandocaster, backing vocals, fiddle|
|Labels||SonyBMG, Open Wide, Columbia|
|Associated acts||The Chicks, Court Yard Hounds|
|Website|| TheChicks.com |
Martha Elenor Maguire (née Erwin, previously Seidel; October 12, 1969) is an American musician who is a founding member of both the all-female alternative country band The Chicks and country bluegrass duo Court Yard Hounds. She won awards in national fiddle championships while still a teenager. Erwin is accomplished on several other instruments, including the mandolin, viola, double bass and guitar. She has written and co-written a number of the band's songs, some of which have become chart-topping hits. She also contributes her skills in vocal harmony and backing vocals, as well as orchestrating string arrangements for the band.
Erwin learned several instruments at a young age, honing her skills with her younger sister, Emily Strayer (born Emily Erwin) and two schoolmates (a brother and sister team, Troy and Sharon Gilchrist) for over five years as a part of a touring bluegrass quartet while in high school. After graduation, the sisters forged an alliance with two other women they had met through the Dallas music scene, Laura Lynch and Robin Lynn Macy, forming a bluegrass and country music band, busking and touring the bluegrass festival circuits for six years. After the departure of Macy, and the replacement of Lynch with singer Natalie Maines, the band widened their musical repertoire and appearance. The result was a trio so commercially successful that it took the country music industry by surprise, with a number of hit songs, albums, and awards that have set records in the music industry. Erwin subsequently stood by her bandmates as they were engulfed in political controversy.
Martha Elenor Erwin, nicknamed Martie, was born October 12, 1969, in York, Pennsylvania.
Encouraged by her parents – educators at private schools – Erwin began playing violin at age five, and by age 12, started to learn to play "fiddle style" after receiving a birthday gift of fiddle lessons. She also was active in her school orchestra.
Her sister Emily shared her love and interest in music, and displayed early talent herself. The two sisters were provided musical instruction on several instruments, and their talent for vocal harmony continued to be nurtured. Although Erwin became famous for her harmony and mastery of the fiddle, she also plays a variety of strings that include the viola, guitar, mandolin, and double bass.Erwin composes songs and arranges the use of stringed instruments for concert and recording performances.
By 1983, Erwin was touring with her sister Emily and school friends siblings Troy and Sharon Gilchrist.The sisters showed an "almost obsessive" interest in busking at small venues and attending bluegrass festivals. The four students formed the teenage bluegrass group "Blue Night Express", playing together for five years, from 1984–1989, while still attending private Greenhill School. "We'd drive down to the west end of Dallas and open our cases, and that was our job", Erwin said of it in a later interview to 60 Minutes II correspondent Dan Rather. "That's how we made money in high school." Also while in high school Erwin performed at Six Flags Over Texas in Arlington, TX, in a strolling duo with Troy Gilchrist for a summer.
In 1987, Erwin was awarded second place for the fiddle in the National fiddle championships held yearly in Winfield, Kansas. Upon graduation from high school, with Emily still in high school, she spent a year attending college at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, from 1988–1989. She performed in the school orchestra there and again competed in the national fiddle championships at the Walnut Valley Festival, in Winfield, earning third place that year.
In the 90s she played occasionally with the slo-core band, Bedhead.
In 1989, Erwin and Strayer joined guitarist Robin Lynn Macy and Laura Lynch on double bass in the Dixie Chicks, playing what was at the time predominantly bluegrass music and a mix of country standards. Originally listed as Martha, and then Martie Erwin, Erwin played fiddle, mandolin, viola and harmonized with Strayer on backing vocals.
Erwin had begun writing and recording songs on their debut independent album, Thank Heavens for Dale Evans , and in 2001, one song co-written with Laura Lynch called "Pink Toenails" resurfaced. The song was featured in the film, Don't Say A Word , with Skye McCole Bartusiak performing the song.
When their second album had a more polished sound, Erwin commented, "I hope our fans won't be disappointed [in The Little Ol' Cowgirl]; it's got drums on every track; it's no longer bluegrass, but we have to make a living and you can't do that playing bluegrass."
Two albums later, after Natalie Maines assumed the position of vocalist, the band was revitalized. Erwin said of their music, "It's very rootsy, but then Natalie comes in with a rock and blues influence. That gave Emily and I[ sic ] a chance to branch out, because we loved those kinds of music but felt limited by our instruments."
Erwin co-wrote the song, "Cowboy Take Me Away" on the Chicks sophomore studio album Fly for her sister Emily. It was a tribute to Emily's courtship with country music writer/singer Charlie Robison.Erwin was singled out by BMI in 2000, and awarded Songwriter of the Year for writing and/or co-writing "Cowboy Take Me Away", "Ready To Run" and "You Were Mine". "You Were Mine" was co-written by the sisters about their parents' divorce.
In 1999, the Dixie Chicks performed two songs, recording a cover of the song, "You Can't Hurry Love" as well as Erwin's "Ready to Run" for the Julia Roberts/ Richard Gere film Runaway Bride . In 2003, Erwin was nominated for a Tony Award for co-composing the film score to Urban Cowboy ; the musical used her "Cowboy Take Me Away".
After the band achieved massive commercial success with its first Sony studio two albums with Maines, they struggled with their record company over artistic direction on the third. Erwin commented, "I don't think any of us ever trusted Nashville. When you're in that town you know everybody is talking about everybody else. Everybody is wishing for the other guy to fail."
Although Erwin and Strayer often appear quiet and demure compared to their animated bandmate Natalie Maines, the trio have stood united on controversial subjects since they banded together to play in 1995, even when their opinions have had the potential to serve them more harm than good. In 2006, Erwin said, "I'd rather have a smaller 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. We don't want those kinds of fans. They limit what you can do."
With Natalie Maines taking a break from music, Erwin was working on a solo fiddle album; however, it was announced in January 2010 that she and sister Emily Strayer have formed a side project called the Court Yard Hounds, with Strayer on lead vocals.The band made their live debut in March at South by Southwest with an album released in May 2010.
Martie married pharmaceutical representative Ted Seidel on June 17, 1995, and changed her last name to Seidel. She also was stepmother to his son, Carter. However, her marriage did not last, and she and Ted Seidel were divorced in November 1999.
At bandmate Natalie Maines' sister Kim's wedding, Martie met Gareth Maguire, a Roman Catholic teacher and actor from Carnlough, Northern Ireland. The couple became engaged in June 2001 and married on August 10, 2001, in a civil ceremony in Hawaii; as explained at one of their concerts, the Dixie Chicks' song "White Trash Wedding" is based on Martie's relationship with Gareth.Later they had a Catholic "blessing" ceremony in the groom's hometown, Carnlough in County Antrim, Northern Ireland, on March 9, 2002, for all the guests that were not able to attend the first wedding. Martie said of the ceremony that the Catholic Church would not permit a wedding service due to her prior divorce. Erwin said that there were many "special" people that they had wanted to include, but that they just could not wait to marry. Another reason for the rush was Gareth's need to keep flying back and forth between the United States and Ireland because of visa considerations.
After her second marriage, Martie changed her name to that of her new husband, which is why in her musical career she has had the surnames of Erwin, Seidel, and Maguire. They had three daughters together: fraternal twins Eva Ruth and Kathleen 'Katie' Emilie were born April 27, 2004. Katie was named after Gareth's late sister, Kathleen.Third daughter Harper Rosie Maguire was born July 25, 2008. The couple divorced in 2013.
Erwin has been frank about using in vitro fertilization to conceive their daughters. In an interview in Conceive , she said, "All my paperwork said 'unspecified origin.' We spent three years of active trying before we went to IVF. First I went on Clomid. Then I had some dye tests and found I had a collapsed tube, so I had laparoscopic surgery; the tube wasn't blocked, just spasming." After three attempts at intrauterine insemination, she said, she and her husband didn't think it was worth continuing in that manner, and switched to IVF.In August 2007, Maguire began IVF again, resulting in their third daughter Harper.
Regarding the number of children the Dixie Chicks had produced in the past seven years, (Maines had two; Strayer had four in addition to Erwin's twins and newborn) Erwin told People in 2008, "We'll have to move over and let the little chicks take over! We've got a new band!"
Erwin and Strayer co-wrote a song, "So Hard", about their own personal experiences with infertility and their need to rely on other methods to conceive. They speak out about the difficulties they faced, but also their good fortune; both having options that for many women are financially prohibitive. Mentioning the stigma attached to IVF, Erwin said, "I think we feel a responsibility to break down some barriers. It's much more of a common problem than people realize."A final concern Erwin mentioned was the question of what to do with all the unused frozen embryos.
Now that I have children, I see those embryos as possible children. So I have to think about what my options are if there are leftovers again. I could keep them in storage, and maybe they will help my children some day. Or I can try to donate them to stem cell research. I don't think I could give them to another family. I would always worry: what if it's an abusive family? What if they don't get enough love? [ dead link ]
Natalie Maines has said she and Erwin learned Transcendental Meditation in the mid-1990s.
Emily Burns Strayer is an American songwriter, singer, multi-instrumentalist, and a founding member of the country band The Chicks, formerly known as the Dixie Chicks. Strayer plays banjo, dobro, guitar, lap steel, bass, mandolin, accordion, and sitar. Initially in her career with The Chicks, she limited her singing to harmony with backing vocals, but within her role in the Court Yard Hounds, she has taken on the role of lead vocalist.
Natalie Louise Maines is the lead vocalist for the all-female country band The Chicks.
Little Ol' Cowgirl is the second studio album by American country band Dixie Chicks, released in 1992. As with their previous album, it produced no chart singles. It was also the last album to feature Robin Lynn Macy, who left in late 1992 over a dispute with the Erwin sisters over the musical direction of the band.
Shouldn't a Told You That is the third studio album by American country band Dixie Chicks, released in 1993. It was their third and final album for the Crystal Clear Sound label, and last to feature singer-bassist Laura Lynch. Then 5 years later they met Natalie Maines and then she joined the band. This album was five years before the release of their 1998 breakthrough album Wide Open Spaces.
Thank Heavens for Dale Evans is the debut studio album by American country music band the Dixie Chicks. The group's original membership of Robin Lynn Macy, Laura Lynch, Martie Erwin, and Emily Erwin, would survive intact for only this album and the following Little Ol' Cowgirl, from 1989 to 1992, before first Macy, and then Lynch departed and the current vocalist, Natalie Maines assumed the vocalist position in 1995, creating the trio that became the highly successful band which found great fame in 1998 and remain popular with a large following to this day.
The Chicks are an American country music band composed of Natalie Maines, along with Emily Strayer and Martie Maguire, who are sisters. Their discography comprises eight studio albums, two live albums and 25 singles.
The Accidents & Accusations World Tour was a concert tour by the Dixie Chicks. It was their first tour where tickets were sold after the scandal which ensued in 2003 when lead singer Natalie Maines publicly criticized President George W. Bush at Shepherd's Bush Empire in London during the Top of the World Tour, leading to intense criticism of the group. Consequently, the level of commercial success for the tour attracted considerable media attention. The tour was named after the lyrics in the song "Easy Silence" from the album Taking the Long Way, released a few weeks earlier in 2006.
"Not Ready to Make Nice" is a song co-written and performed by American country music trio Dixie Chicks. It was released in March 2006 as the first single from the band's seventh studio album, Taking the Long Way. It remains the band's biggest pop hit in the US to date—it is their only song to be certified 2× Platinum and reach the top five on the Hot 100. The song was written by Natalie Maines, Martie Maguire, Emily Robison, and Dan Wilson.
"The Long Way Around" is a song written by Natalie Maines, Martie Maguire, Emily Robison, and Dan Wilson and recorded by the American all-female trio Dixie Chicks for their seventh studio album, Taking the Long Way (2006). The song was released as the fifth and final single from the album.
The Chicks are an American country music band composed of lead singer Natalie Maines and multi-instrumentalist sisters Martie Maguire and Emily Strayer. The Erwin sisters founded the band in 1989 in Dallas, Texas with bassist Laura Lynch and vocalist/guitarist Robin Lynn Macy, and performed bluegrass and country music, busking and touring the bluegrass festival circuits and small venues for six years without attracting a major label. Macy left in 1992 and Lynch became the lead vocalist soon afterward. Following the replacement of Lynch with Maines and a change in repertoire, the Chicks achieved commercial success, beginning in 1998 with hit songs "There's Your Trouble" and "Wide Open Spaces".
"Top of the World" is a contemporary folk-country song written by Patty Griffin and most known as recorded and performed in Grammy Award-winning fashion by the Dixie Chicks.
"Cowboy Take Me Away" is a song by recorded American country music group The Dixie Chicks, written by Martie Maguire and Marcus Hummon. It was released in November 1999 as the second single from their album Fly. The song's title is derived from a famous slogan used in commercials for Calgon bath and beauty products. It reached number one on the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles and Tracks chart in February 2000.
Sharon Gilchrist is an American musician, singer, composer, mandolin instructor and the sister of Troy Gilchrist, also a bluegrass musician.
"Wide Open Spaces" is a song written by Susan Gibson and recorded by the American country music group Dixie Chicks. It was released in August 1998 as the third single and title track from the band's album Wide Open Spaces. The song hit number one on the U.S. Country singles chart and spent four weeks there in November 1998. It also placed to number 41 on the U.S. Pop singles chart. It reached number one on Canada's country music chart, their first chart-topper there and presaging a long history of support in that country for the band.
"You Were Mine" is a song recorded by American country music group Dixie Chicks. It was released in December 1998 as the fourth single from the album Wide Open Spaces. The song hit number one on the U.S. Country singles chart, spending two weeks there in March 1999. It also placed 34th on the Billboard Hot 100 Pop singles chart, and reached third place on Canada's country music chart.
"Ready to Run" is a song recorded by American country music group Dixie Chicks. It was co-written by the group's fiddler, Martie Seidel along with Marcus Hummon. It was released in June 1999 as the lead-off single to the band's album Fly, and their sixth entry on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart, reaching number two. This song was featured on the film soundtrack for Runaway Bride, starring Richard Gere and Julia Roberts.
Court Yard Hounds is an American country music and folk duo, founded by sisters Martie Maguire and Emily Robison. They, along with Natalie Maines, make up The Chicks, formerly the Dixie Chicks. The sisters decided to record a side project under a different name. Court Yard Hounds, featuring Robison for the first time as lead vocalist, released a debut album for Columbia Records, the same label for which the Dixie Chicks has recorded, on May 4, 2010. The album debuted at No. 7 on the Billboard 200 chart, initially selling 61,000 copies. It has sold approximately 825,000 copies in the United States.
Court Yard Hounds is the debut studio album by American country duo the Court Yard Hounds, founded as a side project of the Dixie Chicks by sisters Emily Robison and Martie Maguire. The album was released on May 4, 2010 via Columbia Records. It was mainly recorded in Maguire's home studio in Austin, and co-produced with Jim Scott.
Gaslighter is the eighth studio album by American country band The Chicks. It was released on July 17, 2020, by Columbia Records. Produced by Jack Antonoff and the Chicks, it is the group's first album in fourteen years, and first to be released under their new name. The album was preceded by the release of three singles: "Gaslighter", "Julianna Calm Down", and "March March". The album received critical acclaim.
At a 2003 performance in London, Natalie Maines of the American country band the Dixie Chicks, now known as The Chicks, made a statement criticizing President George W. Bush and the imminent Allied invasion of Iraq. The criticism led to backlash from country listeners, who were mostly right-wing and supported the war. The Dixie Chicks were blacklisted by thousands of country radio stations, and the band members received death threats. The backlash damaged sales of the Dixie Chicks' music and concert tickets. Maines issued an apology, saying her remark had been disrespectful; in 2006, she rescinded the apology, saying she felt Bush deserved no respect.
Maines is a TM-er, it turns out. Eighteen years ago, she told the crowd, she and fiddler Martie Erwin went to learn TM together
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