Heather Rankin is a Canadian singer, songwriter, and actress from Mabou, Nova Scotia. She is most well known as a vocalist of the multi-platinum selling, multiple JUNO award winning group The Rankin Family.
Heather Rankin was born in Mabou, Nova Scotia, the eleventh of twelve children. In 1989, after graduating with a BFA in Theatre from Acadia University, Heather and her siblings, John Morris, Raylene, Jimmy and Cookie, recorded their first record The Rankin Family. Over the next ten years the band released five full albums, a five song EP and two compilation albums. They toured frequently across Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and in Australia and New Zealand. The went on to win six Juno Awards, three Canadian Country Music Awards, an American Country Music Television Award and fifteen East Coast Music Awards. Combined sales of their recordings exceeded 1.5 million copies.
In 1990 CBC Television helped to launch the career of The Rankins by introducing them to the country in Wayne Rostad’s On The Road Again. Shortly thereafter they followed with the documentary special entitled Here Come The Rankins. Many national Canadian television appearances followed. The Rita Show, The Ralph Benmurgui Show, Much Music and Much More Music and Anne Murray’s Cape Breton Special were just a few among them.
The Rankins were also featured on BBC Television’s widely viewed New Year’s broadcast, “Hogmanay” in 1992 and in the Scotland Gaelic Television program, “An Talla Bhalla” in 1991 and 1992.
Hall Brother’s Productions filmed the Rankins while in New York performing at The Bottom Line, the pre-eminent New York club of its era, and then again in late 1995 at the Orpheum in Vancouver in the national broadcast Back Stage Pass.
Following her ten-year career with The Rankins, Heather, the youngest member of the family group, continued touring Canada annually with her sisters, Raylene and Cookie, singing songs from their Christmas recording, Do You Hear…(1997). In the span of the next ten years the Rankin sisters produced two Christmas Television Specials, A Rankin Christmas Cabaret for CBC Television in 1999 and Home for Christmas for Bravo in 2005.
Heather’s voice has been featured on the recordings of Carly Simon (The Bedroom Tapes (1999)), Will Ackerman (Hearing Voices (2001) Grammy nominated), Fiona Joy Hawkins (600 Years In A Moment/ Christmas Joy (2013)), Franklin MacKay (Destiny (2011)) and Peter Jennison (Sgt. MacKenzie (2014)). She has appeared on two of The Chieftains’ recordings with her family (Fire In The Kitchen (1998)/Tears Of Stone (1999)). Her singing is also featured in the critically acclaimed film Margaret’s Museum (1995).
In 2000, Heather was invited to accompany Carly Simon to promote her recording on The View and The Rosie O’Donnell Show and an appearance in Bryant Park, New York City.
In 2007 the family reunited to record Rankin Family Reunion followed by These Are The Moments in 2008. Both recordings were supported by successful Canadian tours. A Sandra Faire/CTV production entitled The Rankin Family Reunion marked the group’s first television special since the death of brother John Morris. With almost one million viewers, it was the highest rated entertainment program in its timeslot when it aired on CTV in December of 2008.
Heather’s stage credits include roles in Neptune Theatre’s productions of Jesus Christ Superstar and Hockey Mom, Hockey Dad (Halifax), the Factory Theatre’s production of Necessary Angel’s The Piper (Toronto) and the Chester Playhouse production of Something Small. She was nominated for a Merritt Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role for her portrayal of Bitsy in Bingo, a Neptune, Mulgrave Road production, written by (Governor General’s Award Winning Playwright) Daniel MacIvor.
Heather’s work in film includes appearances in The Hanging Garden, Wild Dogs, Marion Bridge, Scotland P.A. (an American production),Nonsense Revolution and, most recently, Faith, Fraud and Minimum Wage.
Heather co-narrated the documentary Celtic Tides in 1998, a Hall Brothers Production and co-hosted the 1993 CBC/ Salter Street Production of The ECMAs with the late Denny Doherty of The Mamas And The Papas.
Heather is currently completing her debut solo album with California based songwriter and producer David Tyson (Co-writer/producer of Alannah Myles, Black Velvet and Amanda Marshall, Dark Horse). The recording features seven songs Heather has written with Tyson among its eleven tracks.
TORONTO, ON – March 21, 2017 – East-Coast singer-songwriter Heather Rankin has had a whirlwind of a year. Since the release of her critically acclaimed debut solo album A Fine Line … Read More »
Toronto, ON – February 7, 2017– Cadence Music Group (comprised of Cadence Music/ Pheromone Recordings / Open Road Recordings / Physical Presents / Fontana North) congratulates all of its artists … Read More »
“”A Fine Line” has been three years in the making and features Rankin’s acclaimed vocal range on a mix of both pop and traditional songs.” – The Canadian Press
“Her beautiful voice … Read More »