Shania Twain reveals why she threw away her bra for new album cover

Looking 'liberated' while riding a horse, Shania Twain goes into detail about the intention behind her new album cover

Shania Twain
(Image credit: Clive Brunskill / Staff / Getty Images)

Shania Twain's much-anticipated sixth studio album, Queen of Me, has officially been released - and the 57-year-old artist is finally ready to talk about the inspiration behind the track list and that remarkable cover photo.

Just a few days after looking 'unrecognisable' with platinum blonde locks, Shania went on the record about the semi-nude album cover that has got everyone talking recently, specifically addressing the motives behind the work. 

The star reveals that "the entire intention" behind the album cover was to feel liberated.  

"You know, throw away the bra," she told the Associated Press. "I did a lot of nude photography in that session. That's obviously a partial nude. I wanted to be on a horse. One of the places I feel most liberated is riding a horse. You can fly. It's very empowering. It's like you take this unbridled posture to bridle your freedom. It's like facing a fear, facing something that's uncomfortable, getting myself out of my comfort zone - especially on a horse. That's freedom."

Queen of Me album cover

(Image credit: Republic Nashville)

In the photo, Shania is wearing a black, semi see-through black shirt without a bra on, coupled with a black cowboy hat over her let-down hair that's curled just so. As noted in the interview, the artist is seen riding a black horse in the shot.

Shania is no stranger to revealing photoshoots. Just last week, the artist talked about posing nude and getting 'more saggy' in reference to Queen of Me, which had yet to drop.

"I did a whole shoot as part of the album artwork where I’m completely nude and it was really scary," she said while appearing on the Making Space with Hoda Kotb podcast. "But it was sort of like, I don’t really love my body, I don’t love looking at myself in the mirror with the lights on or looking in the mirror at all at my body. So I said, 'Listen I’m gonna face that fear.”

She went on to say, "If I look at myself from head to toe in the mirror I see my faults … I’m just tired of that lack of freedom. I wanna be more relaxed and comfortable in my own skin. When you’re naked, now you’re relying entirely on your own love of yourself and respect for yourself."

Shania clearly embraced her vulnerability and then some - she looks phenomenal on her new album cover, her first since 2017's Now. 

While chatting with the Associated Press, Shania also discussed the tracklist that she just presented to the world - one less reliant on the sorts of ballads that fans have come to expect from her throughout her illustrious career.

Shania Twain attends the 2022 People's Choice Awards

(Image credit: Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic via Getty)

"I wanted music that was going to make me want to dance," she told the outlet. "Because I was really relying on my songwriting during that time to make me feel a positive energy, everything pretty much turned into this more poppy, dancey, beat-driven, upbeat-driven sounding album.”

We don’t fault the star for wanting to feel happy and radiate the same feeling. It’s been a long time coming, after all: following a Lyme disease and dysphonia (a hoarse voice, basically) diagnosis, Shania had to undergo open-throat surgery in 2018 - a procedure that left her scared and unsure about her future in the music world. 

Shania got candid about her open-throat surgery ordeal years later in an interview with PEOPLE

"It was really weird, I'm like, I don't know what's happening but I can't yell out to the dog, I can't yell at a sports game, I can't cheer, I can't scream or anything. I started seeing specialists, I thought it was just exhaustion, I thought it was in my head because my vocal cords were in great shape," she said to the outlet. "Finally many years later made my way to a neurologist recommended by a head/neck surgeon. He said it's not your vocal cords condition, it's the nerves that create the vocal cord closure. It has to be symmetrical and it's got to be strong in order to phonate with any power." The result? An invasive surgery.

"I ended up getting an operation that gave support to the vocal cords that were lacking in nerve strength," she explained. "Two weakened nerves supported by gore tex - what I call crutches."

As they say: all is well that ends well. If Shania’s latest album is of any indication, the vocal superstar is back and better than ever - sounding incredible in each one of the 12 tracks featured on Queen of Me. 

Anna Rahmanan

Anna Rahmanan is a New York-based writer and editor who covers culture, entertainment, food, fashion and travel news. Anna’s words have appeared on Time Out New York, the Huffington Post, Fortune, Forbes, Us Weekly, Bon Appetit and Brooklyn Magazine, among other outlets.