Nancy Wilson Details Plans to Tour With Ann-Free Heart Lineup
Heart guitarist Nancy Wilson has detailed plans to tour under the Nancy Wilson's Heart moniker, which will not include her sister and singer Ann Wilson.
Wilson's new Heart lineup features several of her longtime collaborators, including guitarist Ryan Waters, drummer Ben Smith, bassist Andy Stoller and keyboardist Dan Walker. Vocal duties will fall to Kimberly Nichole, a Seattle native who became a finalist on Season 8 of The Voice and performed on Broadway in 2018 for a limited engagement of Rocktopia.
Wilson introduced her new band on social media earlier this month, and she recently explained the reasoning behind the band name to Joe Rock of the Long Island, N.Y., radio station WBAB 102.3.
"Heart had a big offer on the table last year for a bigger tour, but Ann wasn't interested in going out with my lineup of guys that we were out with before," Wilson said (via Blabbermouth).
"She has a new lineup of guys that she wanted me to join up with. And I sort of [thought], I don't really know them and don't have loyalty yet for anybody like that. So I just kind of shined it on and decided when I do go out with my new singer Kimberly, I can telegraph to the people coming to the show that they're gonna hear Heart songs in a whole different way."
Wilson added that there was "no comparison to Ann singing or Kimberly singing those same songs, just because it's apples and oranges; you can't compare that stuff. So I figure that's a way to let them know that it's not just Nancy Wilson of Heart doing whatever, but it's Nancy Wilson's Heart, where you're gonna hear more Heart stuff."
The guitarist added that she has "an offer from Styx for me to take my band out, with Kimberly. We're trying to put some dates together in September, preceding that, or after October, where those dates are offered to us. So we're trying to make it work — maybe a couple of buses and a truck. We're just crunching numbers right now. But I would be really excited to be able to go and open the show for Styx and do some songs with them at the same show."
Nancy Wilson's Heart recently made their live debut opening for Styx during the latter band's five-night, 50th-anniversary residency at Las Vegas' Venetian Theatre, which ran from Jan. 28 through Feb. 5. You can see fan-shot footage of one of their performances below.
The Wilson sisters last toured under the Heart name in 2019. Nancy has since released a solo album, You and Me, in 2021, while Ann will release a new solo LP titled Fierce Bliss in April. Nancy will also join Melissa Etheridge, the Go-Go's' Kathy Valentine and Orianthi as a co-leader of the first-ever women's-only Rock 'N' Roll Fantasy Camp over Mother's Day weekend (May 6-9) in Los Angeles.