Shania Twain at Glastonbury 2024 review: this legends slot had enough cowboy yeehaw to power a city

Shania Twain at Glastonbury 2024 review: this legends slot had enough cowboy yeehaw to power a city

Shania Twain caused headlines earlier this week when she announced she had been hoping to make her grand entrance onto the Glastonbury Legends stage riding a horse.

"I love horses. I love animals; I’m going to see if there’s a horse around that I can borrow,” she told BBC Breakfast, thereby sending the pearl clutchers (and, justifiably, animals rights activists) into overdrive.

Well, there’s good and bad news. Alas, there was no horse riding during her hour-long Sunday teatime gig. What there was, though, was enough cowboy yeehaw to power Glastonbury five times over.

Twain’s arrival in the Legends slot has been long overdue. A Nashville star, she’s been making music since the Nineties, carving out a spot for country-pop long before Taylor Swift made it cool, and has sold over 100 million records over the course of her career.

And then there’s the hits. Who hasn’t drunkenly sung karaoke to Man! I Feel Like A Woman – or indeed bawled their eyes out to You’re Still the One?

All of which is to say, that to the tired Sunday crowds, Shania was absolute catnip – and they came ready to party, packing the Pyramid Stage grounds with wall to wall cowboy hats and enough fringed jackets to outfit a small army of rodeo riders.

Twain understood the brief, too. When she finally made her arrival on stage, it was decked out in metres of pink tulle (which she then shed at the end of her first song) and accompanied by several hobby horses and drag queens. And then, right away, she proceeded to sing That Don’t Impress Me Much.

Of course, the crowd went wild. "Hats off to you Glastonbury," she told them. “I feel and I see your support. Thank you so much for having me."

She then proceeded to plunge us into the depths of her back catalogue with Don’t Be Stupid (You Know I Love You) and You Win My Love.

There were multiple eras of Shania on show here. We had I’m Gonna Getcha Good, and a raucous rendition of Any Man of Mine, during which the fiddle players surely gave themselves blisters by shredding the closing notes for all they were worth.

And then, of course, there was You’re Still the One, for which she broke out the acoustic guitar and had a surprisingly intimate sing-along with the crowd – a feeling reinforced by her casual patter between songs. Some remarks were more logical than others; at one point she wondered about how “you make it to pee” in a festival crowd (the jury’s still out on that one).

This wasn’t a Shania in full force. Her voice, damaged by Lyme disease in 2003 (to the point where she feared she would never sing again) is throatier than it used to be, and took a while to warm up.

But that didn’t matter when she broke out the big hitters: the crowd knew them so well they sang them back to her. And by the time Man! I Feel Like a Woman rolled around, the bellowing could likely be heard all the way from Bristol.

“You are country music fanatics!” she screamed at one point. Hell yes we are – she converted us.

Shania Twain and other Glastonbury gigs can be watched on BBC iPlayer