Some albums are more than hit records, they become cultural touchstones that resonate with listeners for decades. With its blend of hopeful optimism and wistful nostalgia, Deana Carter’s Did I Shave My Legs for This? is one of those landmark collections. Carter is celebrating the 25th anniversary of her 5X platinum debut album with a newly released deluxe edition featuring special guests on new versions of two of her biggest hits — and also welcoming friends for a celebratory concert at Nashville’s famed Ryman Auditorium.
Released November 5 via Universal Music Group’s Capitol Records Nashville label, the 25th anniversary edition features two new tracks produced by Carter. She recruited Lauren Alaina, Martina McBride, Ashley McBryde, Kylie Morgan and Vince Gill to join her on a 2021 version of “Strawberry Wine,” a coming-of-age love song written by Matraca Berg and Gary Harrison that won Single and Song of the Year at the 1997 CMA Awards. The new set also features an updated version of “Did I Shave My Legs for This?” with Gill, McBryde, Terri Clark and Sara Evans.
“For 25th anniversary of Shave I thought we needed to do something special,” Carter tells SLN in a phone conversation from her Florida home. “So, we just started a conversation with Universal about collaborations and making it a special project. Initially I wanted to do the whole album and have different artists, like one artist per song with me and then it came down to a bunch of creative meetings and we just decided to do ‘Strawberry Wine’ and ‘Did I Shave My Legs For This?’ and have multi-artist collaborations on those two.”
Carter started reaching out to artists and was thrilled at the response. “I reached out to girls that had shown appreciation for my music and some girls like Martina and I that go way back,” Carter says. “Martina came out before I did and I looked up to her so much. We became comrades that have pulled together.”
Gill is the only male artist to join the estrogen-fueled revivals. “We had Vince Gill do guitar solos on these records. Vince did his from his studio. Having Vince on it was really important for me because he came to Tower Records on West End when we had a little showcase there and he was super monumental in getting the word out about my record,” she says, recalling Gill’s support of her back when she debuted 25 years ago. “So, he had to be on it and he does a fantastic job on guitar. I thought that was just the coolest thing too to have him be featured on guitar and let him shine like that. He’s so awesome.”
Carter captured the studio session that created the 2021 version of “Strawberry Wine” and created a memorable video featuring Alaina, Morgan and McBryde. “Martina did it her from her studio, but the other girls came to Sound Stage and sang,” she says. “We got some footage of them doing their parts and then we pulled it all together with my vocals and just put it together. I felt so honored that they wanted to come and be a part of it. It was so special to see them and wrap my arms around them and hear everybody sing. I got all teary eyed at the sound board because they were singing their parts and just killing it. I’m so excited for everybody to hear it!”
In addition to the two new bonus tracks, the 23-song Digital Deluxe edition of Did I Shave My Legs for This? will include an additional ten songs, seven of which are available digitally for the first time.
Carter plans to celebrate the album’s release when she headlines Nashville’s legendary Ryman Auditorium tonight (November 18) with special guests Charles Esten and BRELAND. Clark and Morgan are also slated to appear, along with other surprise guests.
“It is such an honor and a career highlight to finally headline the Ryman, our sacred Mother Church, especially being a Nashville native and growing up in the industry, knowing that my dad, Fred Carter, Jr., performed on that stage with so many greats,” she says. “And all falling within the 25th anniversary re-release of my very first album Did I Shave My Legs for This? on UMG Nashville. It is a ‘pinch-me’ moment now, and it will be on that super special night, too.”
As Carter celebrates the album that launched her career, she is thankful for the journey it started. “It’s just the gratitude that I have for so much love and support,” Carter sighs. “I’m just so thankful and I hope to just keep being able to bring it and just keep being able to do this.”