Ann Wilson Shares “9 Painful Months” Touring With John Mellencamp

Ann Wilson Shares “9 Painful Months” Touring With John Mellencamp | Society Of Rock Videos

via Cal Vid / Youtube

Ann Wilson looked back at the time Heart went on the road with John Mellencamp, recalling the experience a “particularly painful nine months.”

The tour happened in 1982, a time when Heart was in the middle of a commercial downturn. Mellencamp at that period was enjoying his rise to fame thanks to his classic hit “Jack & Diane.”

During her recent appearance on The Kenny Aronoff Sessions podcast, Wilson recalled:

“It was a particularly painful nine months because John Cougar had a number one record.
“[Heart was] going into the era where we couldn’t get arrested. And we were headlining the show. So, it was uncomfortable.”

Aronoff was drumming for Mellencamp at that trek. He remembered that Heart was “really nice” to him and the whole band. The drummer noted:

“Every night there were more and more John Cougar fans and he was all over MTV.
“We were the new thing.”

The podcast host then mentioned the tour was an amazing experience for him, but apologized for bringing it up to Wilson considering it wasn’t a great time in Heart’s history. The singer then explained:

“Just a time among many.
“If you stay around long enough, you see they’re just eras and you just kind of roll through them.”

Heart on the Road in 2024

In 2019, Heart had a tour and the Wilson sisters have focused on their solo careers since then. Ann released Immortal in 2018 and Fierce Bliss in 2022, while Nancy released You and Me in 2021.

Most recently, Ann brought out Nancy as a special guest at one of her solo concerts for a performance of “Barracuda.” In her conversation with Aronoff, Ann admitted she plans to tour and record more material with her band Tripsitter. She also noted that she’ll be facing a critical moment in 2024 when Heart goes back on tour. She admitted:

“It’s the most weird, complicated thing to juggle.
“Because we’re all really behind Another Door and behind Tripsitter, that whole thing. But the minute you say Heart, all eyes just go to the Heart world.”

Aside from the Wilson sisters, the current Heart lineup consists of drummer Denny Fongheiser, guitarists Craig Bartock and Ryan Waters, bassist Andy Stoller and keyboardist Dan Walker. Heart has announced three concerts to close out the year, two in Southern California followed by a New Year’s Eve concert in Seattle. More dates have yet to be revealed.

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