Rita Wilson has enjoyed a long and successful career in show business as an actress, producer, director, and writer, but it wasn’t until 40 years after she made her television debut that she branched out into a new line as a pop singer.
Rita first donned her producers cap for the record-breaking box-office hit, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, and has since served as a producer and appeared in its sequel, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2, which was released in March of 2016. In addition, Rita co-wrote and performs Even More Mine, the song which plays over the film’s credits. Rita was the driving force behind bringing Nia Vardalos’ semi-autobiographical story to the screen with Vardalos as the lead and was honored with the Visionary Award from the Producer’s Guild of America, the People’s Choice Award for Favorite Comedy, as well as Golden Globe and Oscar nominations.
Rita’s instincts proved solid once again when she saw the theatrical production of Mamma Mia! in London shortly after it opened. Rita’s love of ABBA’s music led her to secure the rights and develop the film, which was filmed on location in Greece. She served as a producer on the 2008 Universal hit that starred Meryl Streep and Pierce Brosnan, and will serve as Executive Producer for its upcoming sequel, Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again!
Rita’s first love, however, is music.
In May 2012 she realized a lifelong dream with the debut of her solo album AM/FM. The album, which is on Decca/Verve Records, is an intimate, elegant and beautifully sung collection of covers of her favorite songs from the ‘60s and ‘70s. Since the release of AM/FM, Rita has been focusing on a new component of her musical career as a songwriter. In March 2016, she released her self-titled second album, Rita Wilson, which showcases her skill for creating insightful, eloquent singer-songwriter pop music that is etched with stunning honesty. This new material was prominently featured in her sold-out two-week residency at the famed Café Carlyle in New York City.
“Ms. Wilson has a catch in her voice that conveys yearning and potential heartbreak behind a façade of cheer. As a stage performer, she is gregarious and forthright; a natural entertainer.” ~ New York Times
Rita has toured around the country and in the summer of 2016 she performed as opener for Rock and Roll Hall-of-Famers Chicago, one of the bestselling bands of all time with over 100 million albums sold. Rita has also created Liner Notes: Songwriters, Stories and Music, in which she is joined by special guests for an evening of songwriters performing and sharing the stories behind their songs. This show has been performed three times at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles to sold-out audiences.
In September 2018, Rita released her new album, Bigger Picture, on her imprint Sing it Loud, distributed by The Orchard. Rita shares the song ‘Bigger Picture’ is about taking stock of who you are and how you got to certain places.
With her third album, the multi-faceted artist takes a bold step forward in the latest chapter of a remarkable journey. She dives headlong into songwriting following a series of personal challenges. Bigger Picture sees her joining forces with some extraordinary musical collaborators. As a result, she has crafted a revelatory set of songs which allow her to tell stories—including her own—in entirely new ways.
The album delves into such themes as perseverance (“Go On Through It”) and romantic disenchantment (“Broken Man”). Additional highlights include “Tear By Tear”—written with Lindy Robbins (Jason Derulo’s “Want to Want Me” and “Skyscraper” for Demi Lovato) and Alex Reid (Andra Day’s “Amen”).
“What I’ve learned with songwriting is to always tell the truth, to never settle for something that’s just okay,” she says. “And to have found that at this point in my life is a gift.” ~ Rita Wilson
Bigger Picture is the first in a series of three albums that Wilson plans on releasing in the near future, and we cannot wait to listen to all of it. For now, we’ll get a chance to hear her incredible talent when she performs on our main stage during Live In The Vineyard.