Heart

  • Rock band from Seattle Washington/Vancouver Canada formed in 1973. The essence of Heart are sisters Ann Wilson (lead singer, various instruments) and Nancy Wilson (guitar, vocals, other instruments).
  • The genesis of the band started in 1967 with a group called The Army. Early members were Steve Fossen and Roger Fisher, among others. After several line up changes, the band’s name was changed to White Heart. Ann Wilson joined in the early 70s, and fell in love with Roger’s brother Mike. Mike moved to Canada to avoid the draft, and Ann followed. Steve and Roger soon followed, and the band Heart was formed, based in Vancouver. Ann’s sister Nancy joined the group in 1974, falling in love with Roger. By 1982, the relationships with Steve and Roger were done, and they were out of the band.
  • In 1975, they released their debut album, Dreamboat Annie. It had 2 hit singles – Magic Man and Crazy on You. The album reached #7 on the Billboard 200 album chart, and was their first of 9 albums to sell over 1 million copies.
  • They have issued 16 studio albums, 8 live albums, and 64 singles. Their biggest album was released in 1985 – Heart sold over 5 million copies and was their only #1 album. Their biggest singles from this album were These Dreams (which peaked at #1) and Never. 
  • They had one other #1 song – Alone, a power ballad released in 1987. Other top 10 hits were Tell It Like It Is, What About Love, Nothin’ At All, Who Will You Run To, and All I Wanna Do Is Make Love to You. 
  • Their signature song, Barracuda, was written by Ann and Nancy after a publicity stunt by their record label, where the label suggested an incestuous affair between the sisters. The relationship with the label was deteriorating, and Barracuda was inspired by their dealings with the company.
  • The band has had many personnel changes over the years, but Ann and Nancy Wilson remain the core. In the 90’s, they went on hiatus for 10 years, but reformed again in 2002, touring and releasing new music. They finished a 2016 tour, and today are again on a hiatus. In January this year, Nancy formed a new band, Roadcase Royale, while Ann announced a solo tour.
  • One of the band’s characteristics is their diversity of style. They range from folk music to heavy metal. Their album Dog and Butterfly is a great example – Side 1 is “Dog,” with rock songs, while Side 2 is “Butterfly,” with folk ballads.
  • Heart was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2013.
  • Heart went a long way in bringing women into the Rock & Roll forefront. They were the first hard rock band with women leading the band. Their songs are staples on classic rock radio today. I thought they were great rockers. Here’s Barracuda, maybe their best classic rock song, with that great guitar riff intro.

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