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Rain doesn't stop Twain

The Pavilion at Starlake, Burgettstown, Pa., July 13, 2023

Reviewed by Michael Rampa

Shania Twain has been busy with a new album out, a global arena tour and having a train named after her cleverly dubbed the "Shania Train." Stephen Colbert proclaimed the Canadian superstar was in the middle of the "Shaniaissaissance." Things do seem to be going her way.

More than 20,000 bore witness to a masterclass in live performance by the originator of country pop who looks and performs decades younger than her 57 years. She came out in stealth mode down the center aisle of the pavilion to stage for the upbeat poppy "Waking Up Dreaming" off the new album "Queen of Me." as the crowd geared up for the many costume changes and the big motorcycle to come.

But this night was a little different. Those expecting elaborate outfits and costume changes may have been surprised because she rocked a sequined body suit for the entire main set that gave out the vibe of a no-nonsense show featuring a very capable band. Drummer Tif "Teddy"Lamson channeled Meg White all evening. Her fills and dynamic playing brought out the rock star side of the outfit while fiddle player Cory Churko kept the four-piece country with twangy fiddle as the two male dancers engaged in a tap-dancing competition and entertained all evening.

The night was a greatest hits compilation as she only played four songs from her latest, perhaps because it was her worst performing album since her self-titled 1993 debut. So, a 19-song two-hour set from the best-selling female country artist of all time was the appropriate call.

Midway, she played a few deep cuts that were "requested but not that requested." Considering that you could throw a dart at the track list of "Come On Over" and hit almost any song in the setlist, the variety was refreshing. As was the duet with opener Breland on "Party For Two." At one point a microburst soaked the venue with torrential rain. More of the fans chose to grab a refreshment in a severe storm rather than leave. That's how much people love Shania Twain.Neither rain nor sleet nor snow...

The blockbuster encore featured the triple shot of "That Don't Impress me Much" (If You're Not In It For Love) I'm Outta Here and of course, "Man I Feel Like a Woman."

©Country Standard Time • Jeffrey B. Remz, editor & publisher •
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