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Heart’s Ann Wilson Diagnosed with Cancer
Ann Wilson performing in 2015. Photograph: Nick Wass/Invision/AP

Ann Wilson, the lead singer of rock band Heart, has announced that she has been diagnosed with cancer.

The 74-year-old shared the news in an Instagram post: “I recently underwent an operation to remove something that, as it turns out, was cancerous. The operation was successful & I’m feeling great but my doctors are now advising me to undergo a course of preventive chemotherapy & I’ve decided to do it. And so my doctors are instructing me to take the rest of the year away from the stage in order to fully recover.”

Heart have therefore cancelled their next tour, entitled Royal Flush, which was supposed to visit 48 cities across the US and Canada during the autumn. In May, Heart cancelled their UK and Europe summer tour, which included six UK arena dates, citing Wilson’s operation.

In her Instagram post, Wilson added that she intended to be back on stage in 2025, writing: “This is merely a pause. I’ve much more to sing.”

With a commanding yet versatile voice suited to power balladry, pop-rock anthems and folkier material, Wilson has been the cornerstone of Heart since she joined in the mid-1970s along with her sister Nancy. The Canadian group released their debut album in 1975 and it reached the US Top 10, but it would be the mid to late 1980s that brought their biggest commercial successes, including two US No 1 singles, These Dreams and Alone. The latter was their biggest hit in the UK, reaching No 3 in 1987.

The band have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and in 2023 Ann and Nancy were given a lifetime achievement Grammy award.

As well as success, she and Nancy endured sexism as two women in a male-dominated rock scene. “Back then, especially in the 70s, there was no filter on how women were sexualised – hyper-sexualised – in order to sell their images,” she told the Guardian in 2021. “Now at least it looks like women have control over their own filters. Back then, they didn’t. It was just like: ‘Hey, here’s a sexy chick. We know how we can sell her.’”

Source: The Guardian, Particle News