The CCMA Awards were this past weekend on Sunday September 9, 2018, and they were electric! The evening started out with a bang with a tribute to Shania Twain performed by Jess Moskaluke, Kira Isabella, and Madeline Merlo – 3 of Canada’s top young female country artists.
Watch the performance yourself, then we’ll discuss:
Jess Moskaluke, Kira Isabella & Madeline Merlo Pay Tribute to Shania Twain
It all started with Jess Moskaluke as a silhouette and saying the words made famous by Shania herself … “Let’s Go Girls!” to which the crowd started cheering. Jess sang “Man! I Feel Like a Woman”, and totally nailed it. She embodied her best Shania, and owned that stage!
It was really fun way to open the tribute, and there was no other song selection for the opening. The only thing it was missing was some more theatrics. It would have been great to have some dancers behind Jess to help elevate the performance. That song really needs a spectacle to accompany it in order to achieve the maximum efficacy.
Once Jess finished her verse and sang the signature line of “Man! I Feel Like a Woman”, it was time for Kira Isabella to sing “Whose Bed Have Your Boots Been Under”. Kira was absolutely stunning, and sounded equally divine! She was such a treat to watch. This song fit her voice seemingly effortlessly. It was so cool to watch her strut across the stage in those shoes as if it was no big deal.
The camera then went over to a third stage where Madeline Merlo belted out one of Shania’s latest singles “Life’s About to Get Good”. As with the other two women, Madeline did a great job with this song – although it wasn’t the best song selection for Madeline’s voice, and there are dozens of other hits they could have used. I guess they wanted to feature one of Shania’s latest pieces of work. It was still super, and an amazing tribute by Madeline Merlo.
This next part is where Madeline Merlo really shone bright. The other two girls joined her on stage and Madeline began to sing “Honey, I’m Home”. This song was legit made for Madeline Merlo. She may be the only person (other than Shania) who could ever do it justice. As soon as she opened her mouth, the sass and grit that came out was electrifying. The other girls did a great job in their parts of this song, but Madeline really stood out. This should have been Madeline’s solo song. The producers should have kept “Life’s About to Get Good” for the end. Seriosly – Madeline, if you’re reading this, PLEASE release a cover of this song, stat!
Although, Jess hit some notes in “Hone, I’m Home” towards the end that were prime!
From here, Shania joined the three women on stage for last line of “Honey, I’m Home”. From there she began her hosting duties. All in all, the opening tribute was truly something spectacular. While there will never be anyone who can do full justice to these iconic songs quite like Shania, these three women did a stellar job, and made Shania (and Canada) very proud! The only things missing was a sense of theatrics. It was great, but it felt like it could have used some more visual elements like dancers, pyrotechnics, or something, you know?
This opening act for the CCMAs sure set expectations high for the rest of the night, and they did not disappoint in the least! It was so great to see so many women share stage, and enjoy the success and recognition they so deserve in the Canadian country music industry.