Annie Bosko

Two voices — one given, one earned. Singer, songwriter and performer Annie Bosko has married the two, recognizing what so many others fail to see — that a powerful and beautiful vocal instrument is, in isolation, incapable of taking her where she has every intention of going.

Opportunity certainly knocks for talent like hers, as opening or backing vocal slots with Darius Rucker, Adele, Josh Groban, Dierks Bentley, Big & Rich, Josh Turner and more confirm. She has performed the national anthem at the NBA All-Star game, recorded for one of the largest entertainment companies in the world, sang demos for some of the biggest hits on the radio and even did a turn on television’s top singing competition. All of those accomplishments fall short, however, for a true music maker with the loftiest ambitions.

As she readies the release of her first EP, her artistry and vision have crystallized in songs including “Crooked Halo” and “Fighter.” Themes of strength, empowerment, vulnerability and self-determination run throughout. And they’re understandable, given her past, as well as her deep-rooted need to create and perform.

Annie’s father is a third-generation farmer and she’s the middle of five children, but it was not the classic story of the musical family.” It was like, ‘Oh my God, we have this freak singing child. What do we do with it?’ They were scared getting into entertainment too early would mess me up.”

Her first taste of the business was singing for a Disney soundtrack at the age of 14, but an affinity for songwriting pulled her toward Nashville. “I’d read the liner notes on albums I loved by Deana Carter, Trisha Yearwood, Brooks & Dunn, Garth Brooks, Shania Twain, whoever. They were all in Nashville, so I knew I had to get there at some point.”

Moving cross-country, Annie sang demos and tried to work into writing appointments. Seeing so many artists take their shots through TV competitions, she auditioned … and advanced. “I made it to ‘American,’ but not ‘Idol,'” she jokes, not so subtly brushing aside the harshness of that reality. “It was a strange process and disappointing,” she admits.

“I’ve always run against the grain,” she continues. “So I realized I have to get to the public. The artist is the captain of the ship, and taking that wheel was hard. But everything from music to pictures to the band is a representation of me, and so my fingerprints have to be on all of it.”

And so it is with her new music, led by the stomping, feisty single “Crooked Halo,” which she wrote with Danny Myrick (Jason Aldean’s “She’s Country”, Craig Morgan’s “International Harvester”) and Danelle Leverett (Big & Rich’s “That’s Why I Pray,” Kelly Clarkson’s “The Sun Will Rise”).

The ballad “Fighter” may be the song that best expresses her determination. “It’s sort of a ministry to people, because everyone is fighting in their own way,” she says. “The idea was to really let this song be a banner that we can all carry in those times when we need it most