Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductees Ann and Nancy Wilson first showed the world that women can rock when their band, Heart, stormed the charts in the ‘70’s with hits like “Crazy on You,” “Magic Man,” “Barracuda,” “Straight On,” and so many more.
Not only did the Wilson sisters lead the band, they wrote the songs and played the instruments too, making them the first women in rock to do so. Heart continued topping the charts through the ‘80’s and ‘90’s with huge hits like “These Dreams,” “Alone,” “What About Love,” “If Looks Could Kill,” “Never,” and a string of other hits that showcased the sisters’ enormous talents as musicians, singers and songwriters.
As individuals, the sisters have also achieved significant success. Ann sang on songs that were both chart successes and motion picture themes, like “Almost Paradise” from Footloose, “Best Man in the World” from The Golden Child, and “Surrender to Me” from Tequila Sunrise, while Nancy composed and performed the scores to a half dozen motion pictures including the award winning “Jerry Maguire” and “Almost Famous.”
Along the way, music by Ann and Nancy Wilson and their band Heart sold more than 35 million albums, sold out arenas worldwide, and found their way into the soundtrack of American life through radio, motion pictures, television, and associations with branded sponsors. Today, songs made famous by Heart are heard in every aspect of contemporary culture.
Nearly 35 years after their first big hit, Ann and Nancy Wilson were back in the Billboard Top 10 in 2010 with Heart’s “Red Velvet Car” album, and a Top 5 DVD (“Night at Sky Church”). 2012’s “Fanatic” continued Heart’s current chart success, spawning two hit singles (“Fanatic” and “Dear Old America”) and debuting in the Billboard Top 25. They also released a comprehensive CD box set entitled “Strange Euphoria,” filled with rarities and previously unreleased treasures that met with acclaim from critics and fans alike.
In September 2012, Ann and Nancy released their first-ever memoire (Kicking & Dreaming: A Story of Heart, Soul and Rock & Roll). The book spent several weeks on the New York Times “Best Sellers” chart and was released by HarperCollins on paperback on September 25, 2013.
2012 also brought well-deserved lifetime honors to the Wilson sisters. In June, they were awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and in December, they learned that, 36 years after the release of “Dreamboat Annie,” Heart had been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony was held at Nokia Live in Los Angeles on April 18, 2013, and aired on HBO on May 18, 2013.
As a fitting finale for an extraordinary year, Ann and Nancy were asked to perform “Stairway to Heaven” as the finale to the 2012 Kennedy Center Honors tribute to Led Zeppelin. In addition to visibly moving Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, and John Paul Jones, their rendition brought the entire Kennedy Center audience to its feet.
In 2013, the Wilson sisters fulfilled a personal goal and created a special once-in-a-career holiday concert with special guests in their hometown of Seattle. Entitled “Heart & Friends: Home for the Holidays,” this special show featured guest performances by Shawn Colvin, Sammy Hagar, Richard Marx, and Pat Monahan. This special concert will be released on DVD/CD and Blu-ray on November 10, 2014, and will air on AXS-TV throughout December.
2014 was a fun year for Heart. Ann sat in with The Roots on the Tonight Show; Ann and Nancy sat in with the Foo Fighters on the Late Show with David Letterman. In May, Ann and Nancy celebrated ASCAP’s 100th birthday in Washington DC at a star-studded event at the Library of Congress attended by members of the joint houses of Congress. On November 7, Heart memorabilia and personal belongings are featured in the Julien’s Rock “N” Roll Icons & Idols auction. Later that month, Heart will appear alongside Stevie Wonder and many other great performers at the 83rd Annual Hollywood Christmas Parade. That show will air on Hallmark Channel and the Hallmark Movie Channel in December.
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