Saw Ann and Nancy Wilson absolutely blow the roof off Sandstone Amphitheater on Thursday. (Uh, if there was a roof at an outdoor venue …)
Heart were one of the headliners at Lilith Fair along with Sarah McLachlan, Emmylou Harris and those two chicks formerly of the Dixie Chicks. Houndtooth Dog or some thing.
Heart was the one group I’d always wanted to see, but hadn’t quite gotten around to it. Our seats were phenomenal. I could feel Ann’s breath on me. Her vicious vibrato gave me goose bumps throughout nearly every song. Girlfriend whoops like a soul sister … and Nancy’s harmonies and guitar solos only added to the musical mayhem.
I forgot how many hits Heart has cranked out over the years. And I forgot how many of those songs were engrained in my medulla oblongata. The first time I heard “Magic Man”, I distinctly remember sitting in the parking lot of Dowling High School while a bunch of my co-sophomores sat around smoking pot. (No worries. I didn’t try pot until college.) And the first time I heard “Never”, I was playing a really lousy tennis game in 100+ degree heat. The song was blasting from my boom box parked on the side of the court.
MTV and Heart were kindred spirits for a couple years in the mid 80’s. Every time I turned around, there was Nancy’s horribly crimped hair. And don’t even get me started on the guys. The other guitarist, bass player and drummer all looked like they’d been recently electrocuted … while holding a can of Aqua Net.
I recently read that Ann’s weight gain over the years was deemed highly problematic by her record company. Truth be told, I always thought Ann was the pretty one. I thought Nancy looked like a tart. But I took a good look back at the videos and I noticed there’s not one good clear full body shot of Ann on stage. There’s a slew of extreme close-ups, but nothing where you can see her figure – or lack thereof. That blew my mind. Talk about creative editing. I was none the wiser until about 10 minutes ago.
And after seeing them on Thursday, I still think Ann is the pretty one.