Ann Wilson Wiki: Musician, Net Worth, ‘Barracuda’, & Facts to Know
Ann Wilson has been on record as being one of the Top Heavy Metal Lead Vocalists of All Time according to 'Hit Parader Magazine.' Along with her guitarist and singer sister, Nancy Wilson, the two musicians were a major part of the American rock band, 'Heart,' a rock band that performed in the 1980's and 1990's. Now at the age 67, Ann Wilson is still doing what she knows best. She is a famous American rock musician on the move living a glamorous life of singing.
Ann Wilson’s Early Life & Education
Ann Dustin Wilson was born in San Diego, California on 19 June 1950. Her family had to move frequently because her father was in the Marine Corps, however, they settled in Seattle, Washington in the 1960's. Wilson has a younger sister, Nancy Wilson with whom she grew up singing with. Ann Wilson graduated from high school in the 1970's while Sammamish High School and Interlake in the Seattle suburb of Bellevue, Washington. Wilson had a rather shy personality which was partially due to the fact that she used to stutter. Aside from that, Wilson had a problem with being overweight and she was often bullied about it, which didn't help the way she felt about herself. In order to deal with her low self-esteem, she took up singing, performing in bars in Seattle where she managed to find fulfillment in performing in bands on stage.
Ann Wilson’s Early Singing Career and Debuts
Ann Wilson joined a local rock band called 'White Heart' in the 1970's. The band then changed their name to 'Hocus Pocus,' but as its fame grew, it changed once again, this time to 'Heart' in 1974. 'Heart' was a strong guitar and lyrics rock ‘n’ roll band based in Vancouver, British Columbia. Ann Wilson performed as a vocalist on the song, 'Dreamboat Annie,' which was first released in 1975 in Canada. In the USA, 'Dreamboat Annie' was released on 14 February 1976 and it was the debut album for 'Heart.' The producer of 'Dreamboat Annie' was Mike Fisher who assisted the band in obtaining a recording contract with their label. Ann Wilson wrote the song, 'Barracuda' together with her sister Nancy, Michael Derosier and guitarist Roger Fisher. 'Barracuda' was recorded in 1977 and it was released the same year in May. Mike Fisher was the producer of 'Barracuda,' which was a hit single by 'Heart' from their second album, 'Little Queen.'
The Musician's Career Highlights
The Wilson sisters’ first debut was the 1980’s song, 'Bebe Le Strange,' when the sisters performed with the band, Heart. By this time, the manager, Ann Wilson’s boyfriend left the band and he was replaced by Michael Fisher. 'Bebe Le Strange' hit number five and it garnered a respectable gold. Anne Wilson together with 'Heart' continued to produce more songs in the 80's like the 1982 hit 'Private Audition' and 1983’s 'Passionworks.' The two songs did not perform as well as the following ones, which were 'This Man is Mine' and 'City’s Burning.' Both landed in the top 20 on the rock chart while the song, 'How Can I Refuse' became number one. Ann Wilson is the lead vocalist on the song, 'Alone,' which was released by Heart in May 1987. It was Heart’s biggest hits taking the number one position on the US Billboard Hot 100. Earlier on, Billy Steinberg and Tom Kelly composed the song, 'Alone' for a pet project in 1983 on the album 'Taking a Cold Look.' 'Alone' became the soundtrack for the CBS sitcom, 'Dreams' in 1984. 'Alone' was also a song by a number of singers trying to make it to Hollywood on the TV Show, American Idol. 20 years down the line, renown singer, Celine Dione also incorporated 'Alone' into her album, 'Taking Chances.' 'Alone' is a very popular song around the world topping among the hit singles in the UK, Canada, Ireland, Norway, Australia, Belgium, and Switzerland. By 1985, 'Heart' signed with Capitol Records and they produced a new era of songs, including the hit songs, 'Never,' 'If Looks Could Kill,' 'Nothin’ At All,' and 'What About Love' among others were released. 1987’s song, 'Bad Animals' went multi-platinum and birthed several hit singles. All of 'Heart’s' songs were successful blockbusters during this era of change and millions of copies were sold. Ann Wilson performed the song 'These Dreams' in 1986 with the rock band, 'Heart.' However, Nancy Wilson was lead vocalist and sang while she was sick with a cold, but oddly enough, the producers loved her raspy voice. The hit song was released the same year in January as a single and 'These Dreams' hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100. 'These Dreams' was the band’s very first song to achieve the first position. The song, 'These Dreams' was written by Martin Page and Bernie Taupin and produced by Ron Nevison under the album, 'Heart.' Capitol Records had just signed with 'Heart' and they were impressed by the turn out of 'These Dreams' as it was a unique song. Ann Wilson continued to perform along with the band in the 1990’s. The hit song, 'Brigade' birthed several other songs like 'All I Wanna Do Is Make Love To You' among others. 'Heart' reached a point in the 1990's where the Wilson sisters decided to rethink the structure of their band and their career as a whole. The musicians began to write their own music once again and together they released the song, 'Desire Walks On.' Ann Wilson performed a solo album with 'Heart' that was released on 11 September 2007. The album, 'Hope & Glory' is the musician’s first solo record that she achieved at the age of 57. The producer of 'Hope & Glory' was Ben Mink and it was recorded in 2006. The album contains guest musicians such as Elton John, Alison Krauss, Wyonna Judd and Rufus Wainwright among others. Ann Wilson’s sister Nancy is also featured in 'Hope & Glory'. The release of 'Hope & Glory' paved way for three more singles the same year, followed by several concerts in Las Vegas for the Wilson sisters.
Awards and Achievements by Ann Wilson
Ann Wilson has been a nominee for various impressive awards and she has even managed to win a few. Most of the awards she won were out of her effortless teamwork with the rock band 'Heart' along with her sister. One such award was the ASCAP Founders Award, which she won together with her sister Nancy Wilson in 2009. In 2012, she won the Walk of Fame Award for a recording, which she shared with her band. Ann Wilson was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2013 and together the Wilson sisters, along with Heart were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame at the Cleveland shrine the same year.
Ann Wilson is a musician that has earned an estimated $18 million dollar net worth over a 36-year career period. As lead women of the rock band 'Heart,' Ann and Nancy Wilson have sold over 35 million records in the past. This figure of sales has contributed greatly to her growing net worth. Ann Wilson as a lead singer for the band has many musical talents including songwriting. Ann Wilson owns a tour bus and she recently bought a home in Florida, which gives a true reflection of her net worth. At 67, Ann Wilson takes pride in her net worth for her dedication to her rock band, which helped to grow her successful career.
Personal Life of Ann Wilson
Ann Wilson was first involved in a relationship with the rock band, Heart’s manager Michael Fisher (Mike). At the same time, her sister Nancy had been involved with Fisher's brother in the 70s. The pair of couples generally managed the band and in 1979, both relationships ended. Ann Wilson’s relationship ended when she suspected Mike of having a relationship with another woman. Ann Wilson met her husband, Dean Wetter while on a blind date in the 1980s'. As luck would have it, her sister, Nancy arranged it but it did not work out at first. Later on, in 2014, Wilson met up with Wetter and they dated again. In April 2015, the couple got married and they recently settled in Key West, Florida.
Facts to Know
1. Capitol Records signed Heart under a tough restrictive contract. They introduced new external songwriters, which was a difficult transition for the Wilson sisters. They felt discouraged as it was a different scenario from doing their own creative teamwork. However, it transformed the Wilson’s and it gave them the ability to embrace a new fashion trend both in appearance and in concert, including MTV features. 2. Ann Wilson and Nancy Wilson split up in August 2016 at a gig in Washington when Ann Wilson’s husband, Dean Wetter assaulted Nancy Wilson’s twin sons. Dean lost his temper when the 16-year-old twins unintentionally left the new tour bus door open. Wetter was arrested on felony charges and since then the two songbirds have gone their separate ways. 3. Ann Wilson adopted two children in the 1990's. Wilson’s first adopted child is a girl named, Marie, adopted in 1991. Later she adopted a son, Dustin in 1998. 4. In January 2002, Ann Wilson had surgery for weight-loss called an adjustable gastric band. Before the surgery, her band member and executives of recording companies had put pressure on her to lose weight. 5. Ann Wilson also developed a drinking problem and in 2009, the musician was diagnosed with a liver problem resulting from excessive use of alcohol. She also used cocaine until it came time for her to give birth to her daughter. Her drinking problem escalated until her colleagues and family became concerned. After the diagnosis, however, Ann Wilson pulled through and has stated that she is totally sober. 6. Ann Wilson accompanied the Beatles tribute tour, 'A Walk Down Abbey Road,' in 2001 as part of the live stage show production. She participated along with other famous musicians along with Alan Parson who was the producer. 7. The song, 'Barracuda' was used by the McCain campaign at the 2008 Republican National Convention. The song was played in reference to Sarah Palin who was John McCain’s running mate. Palin once went by the nickname, 'Sarracuda' when she played on her high school basketball team, which made her a star. The Wilson sisters did not approve the use of the song because they were on different political ends of the campaign. 8. Ann Wilson honored the late Chris Cornell at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame ceremony. Together with the legend, Jerry Cantrell of Alice in Chains’, they sang 'Black Hole Sun' to honor the late Chris Cornell. Ann Wilson also made a touching speech in tribute to Chris Cornell during the inductees Rock & Roll Hall of Fame ceremony. The late Soundgarden frontman, Chris Cornell passed on in 2017. The late Chris Cornell shall be remembered for Heart band’s induction speech at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Cleveland Rock Shrine. Ann Wilson is still a Rock & Roll icon whose music will live on for ages. She has a powerful voice that has been recognized and presented at various conventions. Her performance will resound and her career will skyrocket, as she is an idol to many aspiring musicians.