Ray Wilson (musician)

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Ray Wilson
Ray Wilson at Leamington Spa 2006
Background information
Born (1968-09-08) 8 September 1968 (age 46)
Dumfries, Scotland
Genres Rock, post-grunge
Occupations Singer, guitarist
Instruments Vocals, guitar, bass, harmonica
Years active 1990[1]–present
Labels InsideOut Music, Virgin
Associated acts Stiltskin
Guaranteed Pure
Website www.raywilson.co.uk

Raymond Wilson (born 8 September 1968, Dumfries, Scotland) is a Scottish musician, best known as vocalist in the post-grunge band Stiltskin, and in Genesis between 1996 and 1998.[2] He has released eight solo albums (including five live albums), as well as five band releases.

Early career/Stiltskin[edit]

Wilson started off in a band called Guaranteed Pure in the 1990, which featured himself along with Paul Holmes (keyboards), Steve Wilson (guitars), John Haimes (bass) and Chris Cavanagh (drums).[3] They released an album called Swing Your Bag, the title track of which was included on a compilation album on the label of Fish entitled The Funny Farm Project : Outpatients '93.[4] He then joined Stiltskin; they released one album and had a number one hit in the UK with the single "Inside".


Wilson is probably best known as the lead singer of Genesis from 1996 to 1998, after Phil Collins officially departed in March 1996. Founding Genesis members Tony Banks and Mike Rutherford were handed a CD of the Stiltskin album The Mind's Eye from Virgin Records executives. They were very impressed with Wilson's vocal abilities and had their manager, Tony Smith, call him for an audition. Wilson was officially announced as the new lead singer of Genesis in early June 1997. Their only album with Wilson, ...Calling All Stations..., was released that September and became a top 10 hit worldwide, except for the US where it reached No. 54 on the Billboard 200 album charts. The album was re-issued in 2007. Genesis toured Europe in the winter and spring of 1998, but the American leg was cancelled due to low ticket sales. After the commercial failure of the album, the band announced they would go on an extended hiatus. In May 2001, during an exclusive interview with Dave Negrin for website WorldofGenesis.com, Wilson said, "They basically phoned me up and said, "Ray, we're not continuing." I've never really felt that I was out of the band as such; it's just that the band doesn't exist any more (laughs). When I heard that, it was just after the Cut tour, about a year and a half ago. I've read some articles saying that I was fired and stuff, but to be fair to them, they didn't phone me up and say, "Ray, you're fired. We're going to carry on and we're going to get somebody else to sing." Or, "We're going to carry on and get Phil back." There was never any of that. They just said, "We've decided not to continue because the market doesn't want us." I think they didn't want to completely close the door to ever doing anything again."[5]

Solo career[edit]

Wilson went on to release the album Millionairhead with a solo project called Cut_. It was re-released in 2007 (remastered) including three additional songs.

In 2003 he released a solo album under his own name titled Change. The next year he released another studio album entitled The Next Best Thing, which included yet another cover of "Inside". In 2006 he released another Stiltskin album called She, and in 2007 a Stiltskin live CD featuring (amongst others) 8 of the 12 songs from She. This live CD was recorded 25 October 2006, at Harmonie, Bonn, Germany.

DJ and trance producer Armin van Buuren has produced remixes of the songs "Another Day" (retitled "Yet Another Day") and "Gypsy" from Millionairhead. Both remixes have been released on van Buuren's own albums, and "Yet Another Day" was also released as a single.

In 2014, the first Ray Wilson biography, Gypsy, by journalist Mario Giammetti, was published in Italy (Edizioni Segno).

Concerts with Steve Hackett[edit]

In 2013 Ray Wilson joined Steve Hackett for his "Genesis Revisited II" Tour as a guest singer. He was featured in a special edition of the "Genesis Revisited 2" album on the track "The Carpet Crawlers". It was the first time since 1998 that Ray had worked with a Genesis member.


Solo releases[edit]

Studio albums
Live albums
  • March 2003 "Change"
  • September 2003 "Goodbye Baby Blue"
  • June 2004 "These Are The Changes"


Studio albums
Live albums
  • 2007 Stiltskin Live
  • 1994 "Inside" – No. 1 UK, No. 5 Germany, No. 2 Austria, No. 9 France, No. 7 Netherlands, No. 5 Norway, No. 4 Sweden, No. 5 Switzerland, No. 40 Australia, No. 20 New Zealand
  • 1994 "Footsteps" – No. 34 UK, No. 34 Switzerland, No. 36 New Zealand
  • 1995 "Rest in Peace" – No. 47 UK
  • 2006 "She"
  • 2006 "Lemon Yellow Sun"


Studio albums
  • September 1997 "Congo" – No. 29 UK, No. 35 Austria, No. 31 Germany, No. 32 Switzerland, No. 25 US Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks
  • December 1997 "Shipwrecked" – No. 54 UK, No. 82 Germany
  • March 1998 "Not About Us" – No. 66 UK, No. 81 Germany

Guaranteed Pure[edit]

  • 1993 Swing Your Bag

CD Artwork By Philip Paterson


Studio albums
    • 1999 "Another Day" (Germany-only single)
    • 1999 "Sarah"
    • 1999 "Millionairhead" / "Sarah" (radio promo)

Steve Hackett[edit]


  • 2000 "Big City Nights" (with Scorpions) (Moment of Glory)
  • 2002 "Love Supreme" Turntablerocker (Smile)
  • 2003 "Good Time Love" (with Amanda Lyon) (A tribute to Frank Miller: various artists album)
  • 2003 "Yet Another Day" (with Armin Van Buuren) (76) – No. 70 UK, No. 34 Netherlands
  • 2005 "Gypsy" (with Armin Van Buuren) (Shivers)
  • 2005 "Roses" (with RPWL) (World Through My Eyes)
  • 2005 "Roses (live)" & "Not about us (live)"(with RPWL) (Start The Fire: RPWL Live)
  • 2010 "Should I Wait" with Twentyeight) (In The Beginning)

Personal life[edit]

Wilson is the cousin of Ian Wilson, better known as Ian Catskilkin, of the UK indie band, Art Brut.

In 2007, after a concert in Poland, Wilson met the dancer Małgorzata Mielech. After a few months of dating, he left Edinburgh and moved to Poznań in September 2008.[7][8] As of 2011, the couple was engaged.[9]


  1. ^ http://www.worldofgenesis.com/Biography-RayWilson.htm
  2. ^ John Sakamoto (6 June 1997). "Genesis names new singer". Canoe. Retrieved 24 January 2011. 
  3. ^ http://rateyourmusic.com/artist/guaranteed_pure
  4. ^ http://www.worldofgenesis.com/Biography-RayWilson.htm
  5. ^ Wilson, R. (29 May 2001). Interview by Dave Negrin [Personal Interview]. Inside the mind's eye of ray wilson: An exclusive interview. Retrieved from http://www.worldofgenesis.com/RayWilson-Interview2001.htm
  6. ^ "Ray Wilson and Stiltskin Live". Raywilson.net. Retrieved 17 July 2011. 
  7. ^ "WYWIAD – Ray Wilson: Zamieniłem Edynburg na Poznań" (in Polish). Retrieved 1 August 2013. 
  8. ^ "Zostaję" (in Polish). wp.pl. 23 April 2009. Retrieved 1 August 2013. 
  9. ^ "Ray Wilson zakochany w Polce!". Dzień Dobry TVN (in Polish). 2 October 2011. Retrieved 1 August 2013. 

External links[edit]