Wednesday, June 19, 2013

June 19: Ann Wilson - lead singer of Heart - is 63-years-old today.

Ann Dustin Wilson was born in San Diego, California. Her father was a colonel in the Marine Corps, and she moved frequently. Her family eventually settled in Bellevue, a suburb of Seattle, Washington.

Shy because of a stutter, Wilson sought fulfillment in music. In the early 1970s she joined a local band, White Heart, which changed its name to Hocus Pocus, and then in 1974, to Heart. Ann sang lead in the band, wrote songs, and played flute and occasionally guitar.

In 1974 Ann's younger sister Nancy joined Heart, and the band moved to Canada. Heart recorded their first album Dreamboat Annie in Vancouver in 1975; it was released in the U.S. in 1976. In 1977 Little Queen was released, and in 1978, Dog & Butterfly.

Heart with Nancy & Ann in front 
Ann also sang the duet "Almost Paradise" with Mike Reno in the movie Footloose from 1984 which reached number seven on Billboard's Hot 100. In 1986 she released a solo single from the movie The Golden Child called "The Best Man in the World" which reached number sixty-one in the U.S. She also had a hit in 1988-89 called "Surrender to Me" which was a duet with Cheap Trick singer Robin Zander, taken from the film Tequila Sunrise which reached number six in the U.S. singles chart.

In 1992 Ann appeared on Alice in Chains' EP Sap; she did vocals for "Brother," "Am I Inside" and "Love Song," In 1993, Alice in Chains singer Layne Staley contributed to vocals on "Ring Them Bells," a Bob Dylan cover from Heart's album Desire Walks On.

During the 1970s, Ann Wilson was in a relationship with Michael Fisher, the manager of the band, while her younger sister Nancy was involved with lead guitarist Roger Fisher, Michael's younger brother. Both couples co-controlled the band. In 1979, both relationships ended; Ann stated that Michael had fallen in love with another woman and they parted. The song "Magic Man" was written about Michael and contains autobiographical lyrics about the beginning of their relationship.

Ann and Nancy started a recording studio, Bad Animals, in Seattle in the mid-1990s. They formed a side band, The Lovemongers, which performed "The Battle of Evermore" on the 1992 soundtrack to the Cameron Crowe (Nancy's then husband) movie Singles, and later released a four-song EP. The Lovemongers' debut album Whirlygig was released in 1997.

On September 11, 2007 Ann released her first solo album, Hope & Glory. Hope & Glory features guest appearances from Elton John, k.d. lang, Alison Krauss, Gretchen Wilson, Shawn Colvin, Rufus Wainwright, Wynonna Judd and Deana Carter. Ann's sister, Nancy, also contributed. Four singles were released from the project, "Little Problems, Little Lies," "Isolation" and "Immigrant Song."

The Hope & Glory version of Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant Song" charted as "the #9 most podcasted song of 2007" on the PMC Top10's annual countdown.


For more about Ann and heart, visit their Website at -


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