"We wanted to change it years and years and years ago," added Natalie Maines -- who also "wanted to separate myself from people that wave that Dixie flag" after country music turned its back on them for speaking out against then-President Bush.
Strayer said she also recently saw an Instagram post calling the confederate flag a "Dixie Swastika" and thought, "I don't want to have anything to do with that."
Now known as just The Chicks, the trio will release their first album in 14 years later this month. The debut single, "Gaslighter," made headlines when it dropped -- as many listeners tried to connect the lyrics to Maines' real-life divorce from "Heroes" star Adrian Pasdar.
"Cause boy, I know exactly what you did on my boat," Maines sings on the song -- which, apparently, isn't the only aquatic reference on the album. The Times notes that on another track, "Tights on My Boat," Maines sings, "You can tell the girl who left her tights on my boat that she can have you now."
Maines split from Pasdar in 2017 and a messy legal battle followed, in which he asked for spousal and child support. They settled the matter in December 2019. Maines hasn't directly said how much of the album was influenced by the split. Pasdar, however, does have a boat named after Natalie, the Nautalee.
Curiously, Pasdar is not mentioned by name anywhere in the New York Times piece -- they refer to him simply as her "estranged husband" -- but Maines did say she "was going through a lot of things personally, so I had a lot to write about" when it came to the new album.
"I was raw," she added, saying "it was too hard for me to reveal myself to a lot of different people." Maguire, however, said that working with producer Jack Antonoff they "felt comfortable sharing our dirty laundry."
Maines also confirmed "Gaslighter" is not a political statement against Donald Trump. "I mean, I see Trump in it," she said, "But that is not who I wrote it about."
The new album, also titled "Gaslighter," drops July 17.