Twain is, in fact, working on a new album -- her fifth overall and first since Up! in 2002 -- although she said it's in its early stages. "Right now it's just me and my guitar," she explained, "so that's kind of blank as far as being able to pinpoint where it will really end up as a finished record, once it's produced. The biggest difference is going to be stylistically; I'm leaning toward wanting the music to sound more organic than my previous stuff, less slick, maybe. I just want to direct it that way, that it's all my favorite instruments in there and a really live feel to things and with a contemporary edge to everything. It will just sound different. I think my voice will be very recognizable; I'm assuming that, anyway." Lyrically, Twain added, "I'm still doing the self-reflection and writing in that vein. I'm just different now and I've lived a lot of different things since (Up!), so the stories and the themes will be obviously different and will reflect how I've evolved."
Twain said she'll be taking "a very little portable setup" on the road with her to continue the songwriting and recording, and she plans to record in earnest on days off. She hoped the album would land closer to the tour but acknowledged the timing "won't leave me time to get the new music finished." She did, however, express hope that "maybe closer to the end of the tour I'll be able to put some of that (new) music in...It's difficult to know when the new album is going to be ready...Maybe near the end of the tour I'll be able to introduce a couple of new songs from the album. I'm dying to do it."
Shania Twain Announces First North American Tour In Over a Decade
Twain added that she also sees songwriting for others in the future. "I want to write songs for other artists that are coming up," she noted. "I want to sit back and enjoy them having their moment on the stage and being proud that I'm part of their success and watching my music as the observer from the audience. I could be the creator of things and other people could be the performers of my creations and I would be fulfilled. I don't need to be the one performing what i create. So that's a whole other exciting phase for me that I look forward to."
As for the Rock This Country show itself, Twain said it will be packed with hits and high on energy. "It's just a celebration tour," she noted. "I'm reuniting with the fans out there in their home towns, which I have not done in a decade. It is a goodbye to the stage. It's full of great technology, the highest end possible. It's a very dynamic show, more dynamic than ever before, and no one's seen me in this light before. It's gonna rock, that's for sure. It'll be something nobody's ever seen before from me." She promised it will be "a whole new look, a whole new production entirely" than her Las Vegas residency at Caesars Palace.
Watch Shania Twain 'Plead the Fifth' on 'Watch What Happens Live'
"I'm in a good spirit for it," said Twain, who overcame some major vocal problems several years ago and now does hour-and-a-half warm-ups to get ready for her shows. "For the last two years in Las Vegas the fans have been coming to me, so I just feel real pumped to get out there and go to their towns and bring them this whole new show and I guess, this big sign-off, this big farewell."
Twain will be touring steady until Aug. 23, then breaks before resuming Sept. 12 in Spokane, Wash., wrapping Oct. 11 in Toronto.