> Shania Twain – Stirling Summer Sessions – 2nd of July 2024 (live review) - SNACK: Music, film, arts and culture magazine for Scotland

Shania Twain – Stirling Summer Sessions – 2nd of July 2024 (live review)

Starting off, I live in Stirling, so I’m allowed to say this.

Stirling is probably the last place I’d expect to see Delta Goodrem (Neighbours, anyone?) or English singer-songwriter Rag’n’Bone Man, yet alone the Queen of Country Pop Shania Twain.

Yet, the ‘small city with a big history’ was indeed graced by all three on Tuesday, the 2nd of July.

I wonder if its 900th anniversary had any part to play in getting the ‘Man! I Feel Like a Woman!’ singer to the city? Then again, maybe Shania just really wanted to see the castle.

Lucky for her, the first ever Stirling Summer Sessions was the perfect place to do just that, with the stage nestled at the foot of the historic site.

While Stirling isn’t exactly known for big music events (it is no Glastonbury, which coincidentally Shania also played over the weekend), the city definitely did put its best cowboy boot forward.

Shania, on a Tuesday?

From giveaways, themed cocktails, and stalls selling festival wares, the highstreet was bursting with anticipation that is often saved for payday and karaoke nights; not a random Tuesday.

Also unusual for a Tuesday: cowboy boots and hats, along with feather boas, and leopard-print everything.

Handily, if you came to the venue unaware of the dress code, there was no need to worry as there were plenty of cowboy hats on sale at the merch stall. 

The day started with Delta (from down under) Goodrem who sang ‘Born to Try’ and ‘Sitting on Top of the World’. Following her was Rag’n’Bone Man.

A sea of cowboy hats


Photo Credit: Carlin Braun

Covered in tattoos and standing at 6ft 5inches, he doesn’t seem as though he’d be at home in a crowd of Shania fans.

Yet, if anything, he seemed vaguely bemused, asking his manager to pass over his glasses so he could better see the attendees. Talking to the audience throughout, he seemed to relish the opportunity of performing to the sparkle-clad crowd.

Opening with ‘All you ever wanted’ he set the stage for a set that was heavy on the bass that reverberated through the historic grounds and into my chest the whole way through.

As is important for all artists performing in Scotland, he did indeed make sure to say Scotland a couple times, even going as far as to mention his Scottish blood – this got him a cheer and goodwill from the crowd.

His almost guttural, soulful vocals were perfectly contrasted by his backup singers whose voices were clear and crisp. The trumpet was a nice jazzy touch.

Finishing up his act, the ‘Human’ singer made sure to belt out ‘Shania, don’t put the blame on me!’ which received a chorus of ‘whoos’ from a sea of cowboy hats.

Once he cleared the stage, the ferris wheel tempted. Yet, many stayed in place, the anticipation rising before Shania took to the stage.

Taking it all in


Photo Credit: DFConcerts

Those who had not left the ferris wheel in time for her opening number of ‘Don’t Be Stupid (You Know I Love You)’ did stand up and watch the show from inside the ride’s stalls. If the jiggle is to be believed, it was well received from up there, too.

Appearing on stage in a leopard print cowboy hat and a leopard and tartan skirt, by Scottish designer Siobhan Mackenzie, Shania did not disappoint.

Despite being titled Summer Sessions, the Scottish Summer did what it does best and hid. This was no problem for Shania who said how much she loved the cold air and rain; it seems that cowboy hats are quite effective for the rain.

Staring out into the crowd she made sure to express her love for all her fans promising to ‘savour this moment, I want to take it all in.’

Perhaps reflective of the medical issues experienced by the singer, her appreciation to be on stage was palpable.

Jam-packed

With old hits and a couple new songs, she delivered quite the jam-packed setlist. Alongside the tunes she continued to make a point of involving the crowd.

At the risk of sounding a bit cheesy myself, I will admit that it was quite sweet when the country star brought on two kids (Abbie and Eve) from the audience saying ‘I make music to share… I want to meet the new generation to share this with’

When they declined to sing Shania laughed saying ‘it’s not for everyone, but the songs are for everyone tonight.’

With Abbie and Eve’s parents surely buzzing, Shania stripped it down and played her guitar singing ‘You’re Still The One’ saying ‘It’s been 27 years and you are the reason I’m all the way from Canada here in Scotland.’

‘From This Moment On’, sung with her former Scottish back-up singer Paul Michael Clark, was especially well-received with Shania expertly working the audience, saying ‘Scotland you sure know how to impress a Canadian girl’.

Shania definitely impressed us. It was a performance full of energy and heart. 

Featured Photo Credit: Louie banks

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