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Ann Wilson brings Heart and soul to Celebrity Theatre show in Phoenix


nn Wilson, the longtime lead singer for rock band Heart, wowed a full house May 23 at the Celebrity Theatre in Phoenix where she presented two 40-minute sets filled with Heart hits and a dozen interpretations of rock and soul classics. Wilson is taking advantage of the fact that Heart is on hiatus to play shows that allow her to stretch out and apply her powerful voice to some of her personal favorites as well as to songs that have influenced her singing style. Appropriately enough, the show began with a take on the Who's “The Real Me.”

The first set found Wilson dipping into the Heart catalog for a roaring take on “Barracuda” which was performed with the same arrangement the original recording featured. But the first of many surprises that would play out during the show came with a take on the Heart hit “Crazy on You” where Wilson slowed the tempo and infused the song with soul, turning the lusty rocker into a smoldering torch song. Also played during the first set were the bluesy “Fool No More” and “Anguish,” two songs that Wilson wrote with band guitarist Craig Bartock and that have been released on her series of The Ann Wilson Thing recordings. A frenetic cover of the Jimi Hendrix standard “Manic Depression” closed out the first half of the show.

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