Shania Twain at Country Music Hall of Fame: ‘I’m Not Rushing to the Future’
Shania Twain was back in Nashville on Tuesday (June 27) to preview her new exhibit, Rock This Country, at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.
Twain, who was one of country music's biggest stars in the '90s/early Millennium, gave a private speech in front of hundreds. Admiring the new exhibit, she stated that it's "beautifully done" and that it doesn't just document her career, but her life. Twain took the stage with grace in an all-gold outfit, speaking slowly and relishing in the moment of her roughly 10-minute speech.
In an emotional monologue, Twain first gave honor to Music Row producer and songwriter, Norro Wilson, who passed away in early June. Wilson was instrumental in Twain's career, being the first to invite her to Nashville — from her hometown of Windsor, Ontario, Canada, — to record. The resulting demo landed Twain her first record deal with Mercury Records in 1991.
"I am so brokenhearted to have lost Norro Wilson," Twain says. "I don't know how many of you in the room knew him, but he was truly a — I don't want to say a caretaker — but he stepped in much like a parent when I first came to Nashville and looked out for me and really cared. I just wanted to acknowledge Norro and just speak my gratitude out loud for him."
Twain's reference for Wilson most likely stemmed from the fact she didn't have parents to confide in when she moved to Nashville, as both of her parents passed away in an automobile accident in 1987. The singer was just 21 years old at the time.
"Once I got to Nashville with a record deal, which was a miracle, I had no parents to call to say, 'It's not working out,' or 'Can you send a bit of money?'" Twain recalls. " I had no one to fall back on and my new family was now the future."
However, she explains how those circumstances shaped her into the woman — and international country superstar — she would become.
"My beginnings were humble and very difficult, but they prepared me for standing alone. And by standing alone I humbly say that it wasn't because I got here by myself; it's just because I had to find a stronger person within, both to stand alone in the sense that nobody was going to make the decisions for me, mostly because I didn't want them to," she says. "And I knew that unless I was going to be strong and stand alone that they would make those decisions for me and I would never be what I wanted to be."
Relishing the moment was also one of Twain's main topics. The singer said the 1990s were a "beautifully crazy" period, but she was always racing to the next level, never fully appreciating where she was in her life or career. Now as the possible comeback kid of 2017, Twain looks to change that. She released her latest single, "Life's About to Get Good" to country radio in June, with her album, Now, expected to be released in August.
"This new album, Now, I'm not rushing on to the future. I'm not running from the past. I'm not apologizing for the past. I'm acknowledging the crappy times and saying I wouldn't be here without them. I don't want to relive them, but I'm not running away from them. ... For now, I choose to live in the moment, enjoy my new music and enjoy this moment, all of you, and the gratitude that I'm feeling for being here. However the hell ever it is I got here."
Twain's Rock This Country exhibit opens on June 30; it will run through July 15.
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