By Dan Garcia Photographer Published Aug 28, 2023 at 12:31 PM

Music enthusiasts and fans of all ages gathered at the UW-Madison campus on Saturday night for an electrifying concert by The Chicks at a packed Kohl Center. As the sun set and anticipation filled the air, attendees were treated to a night of unforgettable performances and poignant moments. If you missed out on this iconic event, here are seven reasons why making the drive from Milwaukee to Madison along I-94 for The Chicks' concert was an opportunity you shouldn't have passed up.  

1. No "Wide Open Spaces" at the Kohl Center 

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The Kohl Center was bursting at the seams with excited fans, resulting in a soldout concert that left no "wide open spaces" in sight. The energetic atmosphere was electric, as concertgoers came together to celebrate the music of Emily Strayer, Martie Maguire and, of course, lead vocalist Natalie Maines.  

2. An enthralling opening with "Gaslighter" 

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The Chicks wasted no time in captivating the audience's attention by opening the night with the title track off their 2020 album, "Gaslighter." This powerful song set the tone for an evening filled with dynamic performances and emotional connections, showcasing the band's ability to combine compelling lyrics with unforgettable melodies. 

3. "Tipsy Chicks" 

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In a pleasant twist from the arena’s typical protocol, fans were permitted to purchase alcohol at the concert on the UW campus, making for an evening of enjoyment and relaxation. The exception to the typical college rule was a refreshing change and allowed concert attendees to unwind while enjoying their favorite tunes. Can you even have a country concert without a cold beer?  

4. A harmonious prelude by Ben Harper 

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The concert experience was further enriched by the opening act: the talented Ben Harper. His soulful melodies and heartfelt lyrics seamlessly set the stage for The Chicks' performance, creating a fluid transition between artists that left the audience entranced.  

5. A rare treat at the Kohl Center 

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The Kohl Center is not typically associated with hosting concerts, instead tied to memories of conference championships and memorable wins from the Badgers’ basketball and hockey teams throughout the years, making this event a rare treat for music enthusiasts. The arena's spacious layout and advanced acoustics provided an exceptional setting for The Chicks to showcase their incredible talent, ensuring that the concert's memory would linger long after the final note.  

6. A bold voice and unapologetic expression 

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Throughout their career, The Chicks have fearlessly used their music to express their views and opinions. This unapologetic approach was showcased during the concert, with the band embracing their role as advocates for social change. Their performance of "Not Ready to Make Nice," inspired by the backlash they faced in 2003, was a moving reminder of their resilience in the face of adversity.  

7. A nostalgic farewell with "Goodbye Earl" 

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As the concert reached its crescendo, The Chicks closed the night with their iconic hit single from 2000, "Goodbye Earl." The crowd was transported back in time, belting out the lyrics and relishing the opportunity to experience a song that has remained a timeless classic.