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Shania will ‘Rock This Country’ one last time


The Courier-Journal
By Jeffrey Lee Puckett
July 28, 2015


Shania Twain has largely been out of the spotlight for the last dozen years, at least by her unprecedented standards. For a while, it seemed as if the spotlight existed solely for her.

In the 1990s and early 2000s, she was arguably the most popular entertainer on the planet with two albums that sold a combined 60 million copies and a pair of thoroughly sold out tours. Twain was the gold standard for success across all genres, not just country.

But a planned short sabbatical lasted eight years, a lifetime in popular music, and most of the reasons weren’t good. Throat issues kept her out of the studio and off the stage for several years, and a painful divorce from her producer and cowriter, Robert “Mutt” Lange, followed.

Twain eased back into the life with a two-year residency in Las Vegas and returns to touring with “Rock This Country,” which comes to the KFC Yum! Center Monday night. See her while you can: Her fourth tour will also be her last.

“It’s certainly not my retirement from music,” she said during a conference-call interview. “I will be doing music, I’m sure, until the day I die. ... The performance side of it I feel is a phase in my life and I’ve been doing it for so long. I’m 50 this year, I’ve been on stage since I was 8-years-old, and I’ve really put in my fair share of performance.

“The time is just right now to do other things musically. I want to write more. I want to make lots more records. I miss making records and I haven’t made enough records in my life and in my career.”

She has made them count, however. 1995’s “The Woman in Me” has sold more than 20 million copies worldwide while 1998’s “Come On Over,” at more than 40 million, remains history’s best-selling album by a female performer — and is the best-selling country album of all time.

Twain hasn’t released any music since 2002’s “Up!” but remains a draw. Her Las Vegas residency, aptly called “Still the One,” sold nearly 350,000 tickets but Twain said that she missed taking her show to the fans.

“It’s a very exciting time for me,” she said of the farewell tour. “I think the fans are going to be reintroduced to each other, is the best way I can put it, and that in itself is very exciting. It’s like a reunion of sorts.

“A lot has happened over the last decade since I’ve been off tour in all of our lives, my life and in their lives, and music is bringing us back together .... The most rewarding thing for me, and the thing I’m most looking forward to on this tour, is seeing the fans and being with them again and feeling their excitement and sharing mine with them.”

Twain certainly didn’t invent the idea of blending country and pop music — that’s happening since the 1960s — but she and Lange teamed to essentially create the template for modern country. The line between country, pop and rock was blurred so completely by Twain that it was almost pointless trying to find it.

“I never saw myself as any one thing and I never labeled (myself) specifically or wrote music specifically for a genre,” she said. “What falls into any specific genre has changed and evolved and also there are new genres coming out all of the time. I think it’s a moving target and I enjoy that.”

Twain said that her new music will sound different stylistically but didn’t give any details. She did say that it’s highly unlikely she’ll perform anything new on tour but will instead concentrate on her biggest hits in a 19-song set.

“I don’t want to bore people with songs they don’t know,” she said. “I know, myself, when I go to a concert I want to hear the songs I know and that I’m familiar with, that I already have memories to.”

Shania Twain

WHEN: 7:30 p.m. Monday

WHERE: KFC Yum! Center

COST: $136, $86, $66, $46, available at the venue and www.ticketmaster.com

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