Piano Brings Back Memories: Franzel and Wilson

March 31st, 2012


Singer Anna Wilson from Nashville and pianist Jeff Franzel from Manhattan, N.Y. warm up Tuesday at the Great Bend Municipal Auditorium.

...When jazz artist Anna Wilson was searching for the right songwriter, Franzel’s name was mentioned. It’s been a match made in heaven ever since they met....

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Country and jazz to shake hands when Anna Wilson takes stage

March 29th, 2012

Midland Reporter-Telegram
March 22, 2012

By Georgia Temple
Entertainment Editor
Singer Anna Wilson found her place in music by merging her present with her past.

“I grew up with my mom playing piano in the house, and her repertoire was largely the Great American Songbook and road tunes so I really got that sense of melody and style,” Wilson said in a telephone interview with the Reporter-Telegram. “As I got older and pursued other genres, I moved to Nashville to be a songwriter and a country artist, I thought. By being around that world and doing it for a while, I realized that wasn’t what suited me best.”  READ ARTICLE

Rascal Flatts Talk Opry Membership and Duet Projects

October 5th, 2011

Read Billboard.com article
by Chuck Dauphin, Nashville  |   October 05, 2011 3:30 EDT

..."Easy" was not the only collaboration from Rascal Flatts in 2011. They also were a part of Anna Wilson's Countrypolitan Duets release, adding their harmonies to "You're The Best Thing That Ever Happened To Me," with Ray Price.

"We're huge fans of Ray Price to begin with, but Anna Wilson is a dear friend," Jay says.  Her husband and I write together all the time. He told me 'We're doing this project,' and we love in Anna and believe in what she's doing. It was a wonderful idea to meld jazz and Country together. We were excited to be a part of it."...

Countrypolitan Duets receives 4 Star rating

September 22nd, 2011

Country Music People reviews Anna's new CD, Countrypolitan Duets and gives it a four-star rating!
Read Review Here.

Countrypolitan Duets named one of the Most Interesting Things of 2011-2012

September 21st, 2011

Nashville Arts & Entertainment 
2011-12 Edition

Mention Anna Wilson's name around town and you will likely hear, "THE Jazz singer."  Arguably Nashville's most acclaimed jazz singer, Wilson has produced a unique musical offering this year fusing  a little bit of country and a whole lot of Jazz in her new project, Countrypolitan Duets.  The word "countrypolitan" originated as a Nashville sound--a type of country music engineered by Chet Atkins and Owen Bradley incorporating string sections instead of banjos and fiddles.  It was revolutionary then and remains so now.

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Anna Wilson and Diane Schuur: A Little Bit Country Vocalists Anna Wilson and Diane Schuur take jazz to the honky tonk

July 17th, 2011

July-August 2011 Issue

Christopher Loudon

Plenty of fans along both sides of the jazz-country divide would insist that the two genres are as far apart as fatback and foie gras. But vocalists Anna Wilson and Diane Schuur are hoping to alter that perception with likeminded though distinct new albums. Wilson’s Countrypolitan Duets (Music World), populated with a string of special guests that extends from legends Ray Price, Connie Smith and Kenny Rogers to contemporary stars Keith Urban and Lady Antebellum, blends the lush Nashville Sound of the 1960s with swing across 10 country classics and one original tune. Schuur’s more subdued The Gathering (Vanguard) features covers of 10 vintage hurtin’ songs, and includes appearances by Alison Krauss, Vince Gill, Mark Knopfler and Kirk Whalum.

Though the Nashville-based Wilson has never recorded country songs before, she has written hits for the likes of Billy Ray Cyrus and Reba McEntire. “I’m a bit of a fish out of water,” she laughs. “I love singing jazz but writing country songs.” On previous jazz albums, Wilson focused almost exclusively on original songs. “People started saying they’d like to hear me do something familiar,” she says. “I wanted to do it in a unique and compelling way. I thought that if we took great country songs built around simple chord structures and augmented them with all the sophistication of jazz, we could still maintain the core of the songs but present them in innovative ways. I wanted to demonstrate that country and jazz are not that far apart.”

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Anna Wilson Marries Country and Pop on ‘Countrypolitan Duets’

June 25th, 2011

Countrypolitan Duets CD art

Anna Wilson Voice of America Interview

Wilson taps into Nashville’s so-called “Countrypolitan” era with the help of past and present country stars and two contemporary jazz giants.  She gives a big band treatment to “Walkin’ After Midnight,” featuring the Grammy-winning trio Lady Antebellum.

Wilson explains that Countrypolitan is rooted in “The Nashville Sound,” a style introduced in the late 1950s by artists like Jim Reeves, Patsy Cline and Eddie Arnold.

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WSJ: Jazz Finds a Country Home

April 27th, 2011



Wall Street Journal
posted 4/27/11

Even today, the singer-songwriter Anna Wilson says, "There are two kinds of people out there: Those who believe that there could never be any common ground between jazz and country music, and those who know that they've shaken hands, at least, in the past."

Ms. Wilson's new album, "Countrypolitan Duets," is one of five recently released records that aim for common ground between the two venerable American music traditions. The most high-profile of these is "Here We Go Again," the second recorded meeting between two dominant figures in each medium, Willie Nelson and Wynton Marsalis. But Ms. Wilson's album also boasts a pantheon of Nashville stars both classic (Ray Price, Kenny Rogers) and contemporary (Lady Antebellum, Rascal Flatts). Also new on shelves are two mostly instrumental sets by musicians on the east (Bucky Pizzarelli's "Back in the Saddle Again") and west coasts (Cow Bop's "Too Hick for the Room") that are deeply inspired by the Western Swing of the 1940s. And the most unlikely of them all, "Pretend It's the End of the World," by saxophonist Bryan Murray, explores the conjunction of Merle Haggard and Ornette Coleman.


Anna Wilson Mines Nashville Gold for “Countrypolitan Duets”

April 26th, 2011

Posted Apr 25th 2011 1:00PM by Lorie Hollabaugh

The Boot LogoAnna Wilson's name may be new to country fans, but her songs aren't. As the writer behind songs such as Chuck Wicks' 'All I Ever Wanted' and Lady Antebellum's 'If I Knew Then,' she's enjoyed plenty of success behind the scenes, but she's also made a name for herself vocally as part of the jazz world.


Nashville Country Club gives Countrypolitan Duets 4 Stars

April 21st, 2011

Music Reviews by: Megan Grindle: 4/19/11

Anna Wilson's Countrypolitan Duets mixes the styles of country, jazz, and blues with every song as famous country stars join her track by track. Anna features Matt Giraud in a song that comes to terms with the fact of being friends instead of lovers, called "You Don't Know Me." The bluesy feel from that track follows through to the next, featuring Lady Antebellum, where Anna sings the main vocals and Lady A supports with amazing harmonies. Other songs have a saloon type of feel, or a ballroom performance style, like "Just for What I Am" with Connie Smith, and "You're the Best Thing That Ever Happened To Me" featuring Rascal Flatts and Ray Price. Keith Urban is another big name that joins Anna; it is a slower feel than most of his songs, but most of the CD has that vibe. Lloyd Green, Rick Braun, and Billy Dean are other artists that you may recognize on this CD, and though the style of the album isn't strictly country, if you enjoy them as singers then you will enjoy their work with Anna.

Anna Wilson does a good job at combining country with old time jazz and blues styles, and her music is great for a night in or a calm evening. Her vocals are soft, yet rich, and she takes some country classics and makes them her own! For more on Anna go to annawilson.com