Singer, songwriter Adrian Wilson is not your typical Hollywood success story. Raised in the Bronx by a single mother of four, he not only learned to channel the challenges of his modest upbringing into the forces of inspiration to realize his dreams, but to also embrace his true self from a very young age. And in his neighborhood, it wasn’t exactly easy being Latino, Catholic and gay. But for Wilson, it was the perfect timing of discovering his passion for performing that allowed him to own his authentic self and whatever made him “different,” right from the get go.
“The first time I performed I was six years old and sang at a birthday party, and it was also around that time I had realized I was different from other kids,” says Wilson. “Living in the Bronx during the 80’s with limited exposure to the media, I truly thought I was the only person in the world who was like me but when I took the stage it was like nothing else mattered and my true self took over. I realized that when you’re a performer, being different is not only okay but something that is celebrated and I was fortunate to understand that early sense of freedom and fearlessness I got from being on stage.”
With a remarkable singing voice and the rare charisma of a kid that knows how to “own it,” Adrian Wilson quickly became a recognized talent, performing in New York’s hottest nightclubs before he was even old enough to get in. Soon his singing trickled over into acting and by age sixteen, Wilson had starred in two Off-Broadway productions and went on to work in film and TV productions such as Illuminata with Susan Sarandon and Christopher Walken, The Forensic Files and Guiding Light. At the same time, Wilson started recording his own music and when one of his hit singles got attention in the city’s nightclubs, a major record label came calling – ready to sign him. But this is where Adrian Wilson’s story takes an unexpected and most interesting twist.
“My demo hit had made the top 40 playlist in the nightclubs and a major record label was ready to sign me,” Wilson recalls. “They liked my music, my voice, they liked me – except for one thing. ‘You’re too gay,’ they told me.” In an industry that packages artists for their sex appeal often more than their actual talent, Adrian Wilson was forced to make a decision between a life changing career opportunity or staying true to himself and possibly sacrificing his dreams. “They were basically telling me to hide my sexuality to sell records. The very essence of my music is about living your truth and being who you are, and I knew I couldn’t go out there and lie to my audience. So I walked away.”
Crediting his mother for instilling him with the type of resilience that can always “turn lemons into lemonade,” the eye-opening experience only empowered Wilson even more. He knew that he had a calling and vowed to stay to true to it, no matter what the cost. Eventually his patience and perseverance paid off and when he met producer, Kevin Leach, everything fell into place. Not only did Leach recognize Wilson’s unique marketable fusion of multiple musical genres, he also saw a rare authentic quality that the world was ready to embrace. And as one of the few remaining producers who refuses to use auto tune, Leach stayed true to Wilson’s talent all the way and began recording his entire range of Pop, R&B, Country and Inspirational songs for his upcoming debut album, Adrian Wilson.
In November 2015, Gothiah Records premiered Adrian Wilson’s debut music video, All Consuming Fire, to a sold-out red carpet event at The Crest Theatre in Los Angeles. With powerful lyrics speaking to the heart of every individual and the majestic visual imagery shot in 4K video, Wilson’s world debut not only provided the ideal platform to showcase his talent but to announce a worldwide campaign encouraging everyone to do the same. Be Who You Are is set to launch as a social media campaign spreading a simple message inspiring everyone to stay true to themselves and will offer a platform for individuals to share their personal story on a world stage. Wilson explains that the importance of maintaining one’s true self, especially in the face of adversity, doesn’t just apply to the LGBT community but to every human being.
“I have met so many different types of people suffering in all different type of situations and the common theme is living in fear of being who we truly are. Whether its victims of various types of abuse, people in loveless marriages, transgender people or the many people who simply feel compromised in their current jobs, I have learned firsthand how being your true self is integral to personal happiness and true success. As someone who searched for truth, who stumbled to find it and ultimately got here with the help of others along the way, my purpose now is to give back through my music by inspiring others to find their own way.”
With the successful debut of All Consuming Fire, Adrian Wilson says he is even more inspired to return to Nashville and finish recording his album. Adrian Wilson, is set for release in July 2016 and Wilson then plans to go on a live performance tour throughout the U.S.
To find out more about Adrian Wilson, his music and acting work go to his official website: http://adrianwilsonworld.com/
To find out more about the Be Who You Are campaign, go to: https://www.facebook.com/BeWhoYouAreCampaign