The Queen of Country Music, Twain is still the top-selling female country artist of all time.
It’s now 25 years since the release of her debut, self-titled album, Shania,
Twain is also the recipient of this year’s CCMA Generation Award, which goes to the artists who’ve taken Canada’s country music to new audiences around the world.
Born in Winsdor, Ontario as Eileen Edwards, she grew up in Timmins, Ontario, following her mother’s divorce.
Twain was her step-father’s name and she took Shania in keeping with her affinity for his Ojibway heritage.
“A lot of kids play with dolls and I played with words and sounds”
From 1993 to 2003, Shania Twain lived her dream, winning five Grammy Awards, and 13 Junos, Canada’s annual music awards.
She topped charts year after year and took country music into pop categories and toured globally, opening doors for the many artists that followed.
Her life was never easy. Like an old country tune, her best friend stole her man, and the betrayal was devastating. But Shania Twain has always prevailed.
Her childhood was harrowing, as she revealed candidly in her autobiography. From this Moment On.
Her parents often fought violently and Shania knew hunger and abuse, both physical and sexual.
She said in an interview, with The Guardian newspaper’s Simon Hattenstone, that as child she wrote songs in an effort to escape.
“When you’re hungry, you can’t do anything about it but distract yourself from the hunger. And it really works. It’s therapeutic. A lot of kids play with dolls and I played with words and sounds.”
For a time Shania Twain lost her gift and could not sing, but last year she came back into the spotlight with her first solo album in 15 years, called Now.
The tour continues and on September 19th she begins the U.K. Ireland and European shows, with Australia and New Zealand to follow in November and December.