Shania Twain, Just Plain Talented

Shania at the 2011 Juno Awards. Copyright (2) Sara Collaton

Shania at the 2011 Juno Awards. Copyright (c) Sara Collaton

Born Eilleen Regina Edwards, August 28, 1965 in Windsor, Ontario, Canada, to Sharon and Clarence Edwards. Her parents divorced when she was two and her mother moved to Timmons, Ontario.

There her mother married Jerry Twain, an Ojibwa (First Nation), when she was six. Jerry adopted Eilleen and her sisters. They changed their name to Twain. Two younger brothers entered the picture.

They were poor and often went hungry, so Eilleen learned to hunt. Coming full circle, she was voted in 2001 as PETA’s very first “Sexiest Vegetarian Alive.”

At the tender age of 8, Eilleen started singing in bars to make ends meet. Generally earning $20 between midnight and one in the morning performing for the remaining customers after the bar stopped serving.

At thirteen, she made her first television appearance on CBC television’s The Tommy Hunter Show.

Her parents stormy relationship caused a family split for two years, the family reunited in 1981. Shortly after, she worked for her father in his reforestation business in northern Ontario.

Even though the pay was low and the work demanding, Twain said of her time there, “I loved the feeling of being stranded. I’m not afraid of being in my own environment, being physical, working hard. I was very strong, I walked miles and miles every day and carried heavy loads of trees. You can’t shampoo, use soap or deodorant, or makeup, nothing with any scent; you have to bathe and rinse your clothes in the lake. It was a very rugged existence, but I was very creative and I would sit alone in the forest with my dog and a guitar and would just write songs”.

Nearly thirty years later, she joined Scentstories by Febreze to create a limited edition scent disc with the proceeds going to America’s Second Harvest. While she toured that year the two combined scents were released in the concert venue during the show. They are not the scents listed in the above link.

After high school she left Timmons to pursue a music career. However, her parents died in a car crash, November 1, 1987, when she was 22. She moved back to Timmons to raise her younger siblings.

Her break came in 1993. She changed her name to Shania, allegedly an Ojibwa word meaning “on my way”. With the release of her album, Shania Twain, she gained an audience outside Canada. I’m glad she did.

Music Producer, Robert John “Mutt” Lange met with Shania in June 1993 at the Nashville Fan Fair after many telephone conversations. He produced and co-wrote many of the songs on her second album, The Woman in Me. At the time it was unlike anything in country music.

They married December 28, 1993, having one child, Eja (pronounced Asia). They divorced June 9, 2010.

Her third album, Come On Over, sold over 40 million copies worldwide, the biggest selling album for any female musician.

She received a star on the Canadian Walk of Fame, Toronto, Ontario, Canada in 2003 and the Order of Canada (O.C., the grade of Officer), Canada’s second highest honor for merit, in 2005.

2011 was a good year for Twain. She married Frederic Nicolas Thiebaud. She had a television show, “Why Not? with Shania Twain” on OWN. She received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

After wrapping up her television show, she signed a two-year contract with Caesars Palace for her show titled “Still The One” which started in December 2012. She is definitely on her way.

Since I somehow landed in a Tuesday sort of sandwich position, In honor of the Davember competition, here is Shania’s nod to Robert Palmer’s Addicted to Love video. Take it away Shania…

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About Fannie Cranium

Writing since she could first hold a pen, Tracy Perkins formed her alter ego, "Fannie Cranium" at the suggestion of her husband. Tracy understands smiling makes people wonder what she’s been up to.
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11 Responses to Shania Twain, Just Plain Talented

  1. Liz says:

    take it away indeed! fun facts–hadn’t known much (anything, really) about her and now I do. Gotta love BoFN. And love how you snuck the Febreze link in. It’s all so connected in the blogosphere 🙂

  2. amb says:

    Yay! Shania!! I just love how Canadian this blog has looked lately 😉

    Awesome job Fannie, and sorry if my cagey non-courtship subtextual shenanigans * have made you feel like sandwich filling! Your post was absolutely delicious, if that helps.

    * Ask Arto. It’s a thing. Because, you know, I don’t have enough of those around here already. Oh, the Ethel of it all!

  3. Glad you enjoyed it. She is quite a woman.

    As far as the non-courtship subtextual shenanigans…you two are a lot of fun and I’m happy to play the filling of the Double Stuff Oreo as the occasion warrant. 🙂

  4. Reblogged this on Fannie Cranium's and commented:

    Here’s this week’s contribution to the Blog of Funny Names. Take is away Shania.

  5. Twain. I’ve always enjoyed that surname. Don’t get me wrong, I would HATE to have it as my own, but as long as it belongs to someone else and not me, I’m happy to coexist in a world where people are called Twain.

  6. Arto says:

    Ah, Canada! Sometimes stereotypes are so rewarding, like the moment I realized even their lovely songstresses are actually lumberjacks. This article makes me like Ms. Twain so much more. Good stuff, Fannie!

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