Cap­tur­ing a spec­trum of emo­tions

With song­writ­ing, ac­tress Rita Wil­son finds a new voice.

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - SHOWBIZ - By MES­FIN FEKADU

CRY­ING, Cry­ing, the sec­ond track on Rita Wil­son’s new al­bum, de­scribes the com­plex­ity the ac­tress- singer faced last year af­ter learn­ing she had breast cancer.

“I’m go­ing to all these doc­tor’s ap­point­ments in the morn­ing, but at night I’m go­ing off and do­ing this com­edy,” she said of star­ring in Fish In The Dark with Larry David on Broad­way.

“It’s like, ‘ Yeah, I’m out here, I’m do­ing a com­edy, I’m laugh­ing!’ But you go home and you’re think­ing about what’s go­ing to hap­pen in your life and are you go­ing to be OK?”

Cry­ing, Cry­ing, which fea­tures Wil­son singing hon­est lyrics over a fun beat, is one of many tunes she co- wrote – a first for the per­former – for Rita Wil­son, which was re­leased re­cently.

She’s found a new voice in song­writ­ing and col­lab­o­rated with a num­ber of well­known pro­duc­ers and writ­ers to craft a coun­try- pop record that’s co­he­sive through­out the 15 tracks.

The al­bum was co- writ­ten with Dan Wil­son, who had in hand in writ­ing iconic songs like Adele’s Some­one Like You and the Dixie Chicks’ Not Ready To Make Nice.” Other col­lab­o­ra­tors in­clude Baby­face ( Whit­ney Hous­ton, Toni Brax­ton), Stephan Moc­cio ( The Weeknd, Mi­ley Cyrus), Su­gar­land’s Kris­tian Bush, Ron Aniello ( Bruce Spring­steen) and Nathan Chap­man, who was a pro­ducer on all five Tay­lor Swift al­bums.

Af­ter her first al­bum, 2012’ s AM/ FM, Wil­son was en­cour­aged to write songs by her friend Kara DioGuardi, the pop­u­lar song­writer who has worked with Car­rie Un­der­wood, Christina Aguil­era and Kelly Clark­son.

“( She asked), ‘ Do you have any­thing you want to say?’ And I said, ` Yes,”’ Wil­son re­called.

That’s when they wrote Grate­ful. And Wil­son cried.

“This is ex­actly what I wanted to do,” she said of writ­ing a song that cap­tured her emo­tions. “Grate­ful has a very spe­cial place in my heart ... be­cause it’s re­flec­tive of what I’ve been through in the last few years in my life.”

Af­ter creat­ing 30 songs in Los An­ge­les and Nashville, Ten­nessee, Wil­son re­alised she had a full al­bum of new ma­te­rial.

Not all of the tracks on Rita Wil­son are based per­sonal ex­pe­ri­ences, but some hit home: Still Gone is about “los­ing my dad and my two girl­friends in a very short pe­riod of time,” and Girls Night In de­scribes a night dur­ing which Wil­son and her girl­friends trade their stilet­tos for sweat­pants.

“I got all my girl­friends to­gether and we rented a small stu­dio in the neigh­bour­hood and we had a chore­og­ra­pher come in and teach us all the dance moves for Janet Jack­son’s All For You,’ she said with a laugh.

Wil­son, who has ap­peared in a num­ber of films and TV shows and is mar­ried to Tom Hanks, re­cently per­formed a num­ber of shows at the Cafe Car­lyle in New York City. She is cur­rently on tour to sup­port the al­bum.

She’ll com­bine her film and mu­sic worlds with the up­com­ing My Big Fat Greek Wed­ding 2, a film she pro­duced, has a role in and wrote mu­sic for. She sings on the track, Even More Mine, which ap­pears at the end of the movie.

Strong Tonight, from her new al­bum, will be cov­ered by Con­nie Brit­ton’s char­ac­ter on the TV se­ries Nashville.

The 59- year- old per­former said she was afraid to tackle mu­sic in the be­gin­ning.

“We all, I think, are re­ally scared to take chances and to try new things, and ... we put our­selves in boxes and we just say, ` I can’t do this,”’ she said.

“I think to be able to have mu­sic right now at this point in my life is such a huge bless­ing, but ... I had to get over what­ever judg­ment you feel is go­ing to come at you. I’m not 25 years old, so hope­fully peo­ple will be buy­ing this.” – AP

Wil­son will com­bine her film and mu­sic worlds with the up­com­ing she pro­duced, has a role in and wrote mu­sic for. — AP

a film

Wil­son and ac­tor hanks have been mar­ried for 28 years. — AFP

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