An open letter to Keavin Lawdermilk

By David Stevens; Clovis News Journal Editor

Dear Keavin,

I read a wonderful story about you in our newspaper on Wednesday. What an exciting life it must be, guarding the Dixie Chicks and associating with all of those other movie and music stars. Wow. A lot of people must be jealous. I know I am.

I’m writing to you in this format because I haven’t been able to contact you on your cell phone or by e-mail. I’m sure you’re not avoiding me; you must be really busy with all of your responsibilities. Those Chicks made a lot of people mad with their 2003 comments about President Bush and their new song, “Not Ready to Make Nice.”

Anyway, I decided to write to you this way since I know you like to surf the Internet for stories about the Dixie Chicks. In fact, if you remember, that’s how we first heard about you here at the newspaper. You read a local columnist’s comments on the Dixie Chicks and you e-mailed us to let us know that you were from Clovis and that you’d passed that column along to the band.

Thanks for the interest and thanks for taking time to do the interview with our reporter. Oh, and a really big thanks for setting up the interview with Martie Maguire. I still can’t believe she called us. We never would have been able to talk to her if you hadn’t arranged it with the publicity staff.
Unfortunately, Keavin — and I’m hoping this goes back to some kind of professional jealousy that I’m sure you run into all the time in your business — some people have complained that parts of our article about you were not true.

They said you don’t work for the Dixie Chicks and you’re not associated with them in any way.

You Hollywood folk are really hard to chase down for interviews and so I can’t even confirm that those who called and e-mailed are even associated with the Chicks, much less whether their claims have any legitimacy.

And so what I’d like to do is just ask you their questions. Then, when your busy schedule clears, you can get back to me and clear all this up, OK?

First, who is Kevin Wise and why is he using his name and your face to sell memorabilia from entertainers on e-Bay?

Do you know a guy named Rich Pollock? He claims to own the company that provides Chicks’ security. He said you don’t work for him. He also said you tried to arrange a meeting with the Chicks in 2003 but were denied that request because of some questions about your background.

Do you know a woman named Nancy Atkins? She claims to be associated with Dixie Chicks management and she sent us one of your photos that we published — only her copy has singer James Taylor’s face instead of yours. People can do amazing things with Photoshop, can’t they?

We’ve also been told that Martie Maguire is particularly upset about our article and that she never called our reporter. The Chicks’ supposed handlers are claiming that was an imposter posing as Maguire.
I’m not sure what to think, Keavin. We’ve called the Dixie Chicks’ publicity offices, but a spokeswoman said they would not comment on anything related to security issues.

We’ve also called their manager’s office and their record company, but nobody in those places seems to know anything about anything. They said they’d get back to us.

The one I most want to hear from is you.

I have to tell you, our reporter is pretty upset about all of this. She’s one of the world’s really nice people whose nature is not to question a person’s honesty unless she sees a lot of red flags. But after talking with the folks who called us after your story was printed, she said she’s feeling jaded. “I hate that feeling,” she said, “because I have always tried to find the best in people … now I will definitely not be as trusting.”

So get back with me as soon as possible, Keavin. We really would like to clear this up.

David Stevens is editor for Freedom Newspapers of New Mexico. He can be contacted at 1-800-819-9925. His e-mail address is:
david_stevens@link.freedom.com