Heart returns home, set to play Marymoor Park

Nancy and Ann Wilson and Heart will play Marymoor Park on Tuesday.  - Courtesy photo
Nancy and Ann Wilson and Heart will play Marymoor Park on Tuesday.
— image credit: Courtesy photo

It’s a hometown show for Heart, and the band and its fans are probably chomping at the bit like a barracuda in the midst of a feeding frenzy.

Sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson helped pen the song “Barracuda,” which hit the airwaves in 1977 and became one of the band’s top singles. When they roar through that tune on Tuesday night at Marymoor Park, it should be a crowd-pleaser to the hilt.

Showtime is at 7:30 p.m. with Michael Grimm opening the concert, which is part of AEG Live’s series and presented by Swedish Redmond.

Heart rose to prominence in 1976 with its “Dreamboat Annie” album, which spawned the hit singles “Crazy on You” and “Magic Man.”

At a 2012 book signing at Barnes and Noble in Northgate, the Wilson sisters — who lived in Bellevue during their early years — discussed their early beginnings, and later success, in the male-dominated rock business.

“It was an un-killable drive that Nancy and I was (meant) to be,” said vocalist Ann. Guitarist Nancy shook her head and smiled with pride.

Heart — which originally featured Inglemoor High School graduates guitarist Roger Fisher and bassist Steve Fossen — has churned out top-selling albums throughout its career, including “Fanatic” in 2012, and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2013.

Longtime friend Sue Ennis, who bonded with the girls over the Beatles when her family moved to Bellevue in 1966, wrote songs with the Wilsons for Heart starting with the “Dog and Butterfly” album in 1978 and onward. “Straight On,” “Dog and Butterfly” and “Even it Up” are a few of the tunes they wrote together.

Nowadays, Ennis teaches songwriting at Shoreline Community College and recently wrote songs and underscore for the musical “Art Dog” at the Seattle Children’s Theatre.

Ennis said she could write a novel about her songwriting experiences with the Wilsons.

“Writing songs in the early days was like this: We’d all contribute to the words as well as the music, although as the singer, Ann tended to hover more over the lyrics. Nancy gravitated towards the music side a bit more,” she said. “It was a mind-blowing experience to work with such naturally gifted musicians. They worked very much off of feel, instinct and intuition and still do. Both Ann and Nancy have a god-given, world-class talent.”

Her early days of writing with the Wilsons still influence her today.

At Shoreline, when analyzing and breaking down the creative process for her students, Ennis often finds herself writing cerebrally.

“In my experience, this does the song no good,” she said. “So I have to sit back and take a breath and remember to get back to writing ‘Wilson-style.’”

For ticket information for Tuesday’s show, visit


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