Already have an account?
Get back to the

Anne Wilson Combines Her Faithful Heart and Country Soul on New Album ‘Rebel’

The "My Jesus" singer dishes on collaborating with Lainey Wilson, Chris Tomlin & more!

Since bursting onto the scene with her chart-topping hit, “My Jesus,” Anne Wilson quickly became one of the most successful new artists in Christian music.

And with the April 19 release of her new album Rebel, the Kentucky native continues to share inspiring messages of hope and faith, as she expands her musical reach into the country genre.

“It’s not me changing. It’s not me leaving Christian music to go to country. I’m expanding into country music where I can reach more people,” she tells Woman’s World. “I’ve enjoyed doing both. It’s been so fun so far.”

MUST-READ: Christian Singer Tasha Layton Opens Up About Overcoming Depression & Despair: “There’s More Fight In You Than You Realize”

Anne Wilson, 2024Laney Oakes Photography

The story of Anne Wilson

Anne first sang in public at her brother’s funeral when she was just 15. Her performance of “What a Beautiful Name” soon went viral and led to her signing a record deal.

Her infectious 2021 breakthrough hit “My Jesus” soared to No. 1 on Billboard’s Christian Airplay Chart and became a platinum-selling single.

Since then, she has racked up more than 880 million global streams, made her debut on the Grand Ole Opry, earned a Grammy nomination for her debut album, My Jesus, and was named a Spotify Hot Country Artist to Watch, one of the CMT Next Women of Country and Opry NextStage Artist in 2024.

Having quickly established herself as a successful Christian artist, what prompted her to expand into the country music arena?

MUST-READ: Country Icon Trisha Yearwood Reflects on Grand Ole Opry Induction, Her Newest Culinary Endeavor & More! (EXCLUSIVE)

The CMT Next Women of Country: Class of 2024
The CMT Next Women of Country: Class of 2024 Catherine Powell/Getty Images for CMT

“I felt called by God to do it,” Anne says. “I want to reach more people for the gospel. That’s my ultimate goal. I’m following in the footsteps of Jesus as much as I can, as we all are, to really spread the gospel to the world, and for me, it looks like this. It looks like being willing to go talk about my faith in front of people that maybe wouldn’t normally hear a message like that. It’s being bold enough to do it and not apologizing for it, but being who I am authentically.”

Following in Jesus’ footsteps

Though the album title, Rebel, might seem like an outlaw move for a Christian singer, Anne points out that Jesus was a rebel.

“I remember studying the life of Jesus and really feeling like just a lot of examples in the Bible of him being a rebel, like Him standing for truth, going against the world and doing his own thing and not apologizing for it. He was bold and firm in what he believed in,” she smiles.

“I want to follow in his footsteps and do the same thing. Obviously the world we live in, it’s completely different, but for me, just having faith alone makes me a rebel.”

Breaking down Anne’s first country single

Anne Wilson, 2024
Anne Wilson, 2024Jason Koerner/Getty Images

Anne’s first single targeting country radio is a poignant song titled “Rain in the Rearview” that not only showcases her soaring, evocative voice but also her talents as a songwriter.

“I wrote that with Matthew West, Zach Kale and Jaren Johnston and it was honestly such a special day. I will never forget it,” she shares.

“We had talked about what it meant to move on from the past and step into what was ahead, knowing that there is going to be brighter days ahead. I had shared with them about how I had lost my brother in a car accident in 2017, and how I felt like I was finally getting to this place of healing.”

She continued, “I wanted to write a song to inspire people to cling to hope, knowing that the sun is going to shine one day, and that when we look back and the rain is in our rearview, we will know that we’re better for it and that God was the one that got us through it.”

Connecting with her listeners

Anne Wilson, 2023
Anne Wilson, 2023Jason Kempin/Getty Images for ACM

Anne is gratified to see the song resonating with listeners. “I’ve had a lot of people reach out to me about loss and say, ‘Hey, I’ve just lost my son, my daughter, my spouse, my brother,’ whatever the situation is, ‘and I love the reminder of this song because it gives me hope that even though what I’m going through is so hard right now, that I believe that one day it will be better.’ And that is so sweet when I get stories like that because it really reminds me of why I do what I do.”

Collaborating with country’s biggest names

On Rebel, Anne welcomes some of the biggest artists in both country and Christian music as she collaborates with reigning CMA Entertainer of the Year Lainey Wilson, veteran worship leader Chris Tomlin and current country hitmaker Jordan Davis.

MUST-READ: Amazing Before and After Photos of Country Star Lainey Wilson’s Recent Weight Loss

She and Lainey recorded “Praying Woman,” a song she co-wrote with Matthew, Jeff, Lainey and Trannie Anderson.

“Me and Lainey had been friends for a while on Instagram,” she says of how the collaboration came about.

“We met through social media and then we wrote together in July of 2023, and that was the song we wrote that day. We got to talking about our moms and how we have vivid memories of them praying our whole lives and how special it was. I remember hearing her voice for the first time on the song and I was just blown away. She’s so talented. I’m so honored that she’s on the record.”

Anne Wilson and Jordan Davis join forces

Anne Wilson and Jordan Davis, 2023
Anne Wilson and Jordan Davis, 2023Jason Davis/Getty Images for ACM

Anne met Jordan last summer when they performed his CMA Award winning single “Buy Dirt” on stage at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium during the ACM Honors.

“I remember meeting him and I told my manager, ‘Whatever it is, I just want to do a song with him.’ Then sure enough, we ended up writing a song that we thought would be perfect for his voice,” she says of “Country Gold,” which she co-wrote with Matthew and Jeff.

“Jordan was excited to do it, and I just couldn’t believe it. So he featured on the song and just seeing it all take shape was really cool. Hearing his unique voice and vocals on the song just really made it so much better.”

Anne says “Country Gold” is very sentimental as it has ties to her past and leans into her hopes for her future.

“It’s about what it meant for me to grow up in a small town seeing my grandparents and my great-grandparents value farmland and the simple life and just what that means for my upbringing, and then what that means for hopefully my future family and the way I want to raise my kids one day. That song is very sentimental to me. I really love the lyrics and I love the title too.”

Anne Wilson partners up with Chris Tomlin

Anne Wilson, 2024Robby Klein

The other high-profile collaboration on the record is with Chris Tomlin on “The Cross.”

“I’d written the song back in early 2023. I love the song. It brought me to tears. It’s such a sweet song and is really just one of those spiritual songs I just adore. Chris had been a friend for a while, then we reconnected in 2023 through something with our record label, so I asked him, ‘Hey, would you ever be interested in doing a song?’ And he was like, ‘Of course. Just send me the song.’ So I sent him the song and he loved it.”

Anne Wilson finds her country footing

As she moves forward in a more country direction, Anne says it really isn’t much of a departure from her original sound.

My Jesus was definitely faith-based message, but it did have the country sound and people talked to me about that from day one,” says Anne, who is planning a headlining tour in the fall performing in theaters all over the country.

“There were a couple of songs that people would be like, ‘Well, we love the message of the song. It’s so spot on with the gospel and Christian faith, but we’re not going to play it on radio because we just think it’s too country.’ It really made me realize the need for both, for someone to share the message of the gospel, but with the sound of country music. That had always been me, but it really hit me for the first time that I needed to be the one to do this.”

MUST-READ: 10 Christian, Country + Clean Comedians Guaranteed To Make You Laugh Out Loud

REBEL Track List

1. “REBEL” (Anne Wilson, Jeff Pardo, Matthew West)

2. “Rain In The Rearview” (Anne Wilson, Matthew West, Zach Kale, Jaren Johnston)

3. “Strong” (Anne Wilson, Jeff Pardo, Matthew West)

4. “God & Country” (Anne Wilson, Jeff Pardo, Matthew West, Trannie Anderson)

5. “Praying Woman (with Lainey Wilson)” (Anne Wilson, Jeff Pardo, Matthew West, Lainey Wilson, Trannie Anderson)

6. “Songs About Whiskey” (Anne Wilson, Jeff Pardo, Matthew West, Lauren Hungate)

7. “Sinner’s Prayer” (Anne Wilson, Jeff Pardo, Matthew West, Lauren Hungate)

8. “The Cross (with Chris Tomlin)” (Anne Wilson, Jeff Pardo, Matthew West, Jonathan Smith)

9. “My Father’s Daughter” (Anne Wilson, Jeff Pardo, Matthew West, Emily Weisband)

10. “Red Flag” (Anne Wilson, Jonathan Smith, Casey Beathard)

11. “Country Gold (with Jordan Davis)” (Anne Wilson, Jeff Pardo, Matthew West)

12. “Southern Gospel” (Anne Wilson, Jeff Pardo, Matthew West, Lauren Hungate)

13. “Dirt Roads In Heaven” (Anne Wilson, Jeff Pardo, Nicolle Galyon, Matthew West)

14. “3:16” (Anne Wilson, Jeff Pardo, Matthew West)

15. “Milestones” (Anne Wilson, Nicolle Galyon, Lauren Hungate)

16. “Out of the Bluegrass” (Anne Wilson, Nicolle Galyon, Emily Weisband)

Use left and right arrow keys to navigate between menu items. Use right arrow key to move into submenus. Use escape to exit the menu. Use up and down arrow keys to explore. Use left arrow key to move back to the parent list.