Born in Los Angeles on May 9, 1968, Wilson received his degree in music composition from Bennington College. He counts Duke Ellington, Gil Evans, Wes Montgomery, Ry Cooder, and T-Bone Walker among his influences. His first album Anthony Wilson was nominated for a Grammy and his second, Goat Hill Junket (1998), also garnered notice. Subsequent recordings by his nine-piece band are Adult Themes (MAMA, 1999) and Power of Nine (Groove Note, 2006). Diana Krall and mandolinist Eva Scow appear on the latter.
He has also recorded two trio albums with Hammond organist Joe Bagg and drummer Mark Ferber, Our Gang in 2001 and Savivity in 2005 (both on Groove Note). In 2009 he recorded more organ trio music with Jack of Hearts (again for Groove Note) featuring Larry Goldings on Hammond organ, and alternating drummers Jim Keltner and Jeff Hamilton.
As a composer, he has received commissions from IAJE, the Henry Mancini Institute, Jazz at Lincoln Center, and luthier John Monteleone. His guitar quartet song cycle "Seasons" was composed as a vehicle for Monteleone's quartet of guitars called "The Four Seasons," which were included in the Metropolitan Museum of Art's 2011 exhibition "Guitar Heroes." "Seasons" was released as an audio CD and live performance film DVD set on Wilson's label Goat Hill Recordings in November 2011. Another 2011 album, recorded in Brazil, was "Campo Belo" (Goat Hill Recordings), featuring rising Brazilian music stars André Mehmari (piano and accordion), Edu Ribeiro (drums), and Guto Wirtti (bass).
Wilson arranged and orchestrated Ivan Lins' song "Love Dance" for Barbra Streisand, on her 2009 album "Love Is The Answer," produced by Diana Krall. Wilson also played guitar on that album.
Anthony Wilson can be heard on recordings by Paul McCartney (Kisses on the Bottom, Concord), Willie Nelson (American Standard, Verve), Leon Russell (Life Journey, Blue Note) , Aaron Neville (Nature Boy: The Standards Album, Verve), Al Jarreau (Accentuate the Positive, Verve), Mose Allison (The Way of the World, Anti-), Joe Henry (Fuse, Mammoth), Diane Schuur (Midnight, Concord), Gladys Knight (Before Me, Verve), Kenny Burrell (75th Birthday Bash Live!, Blue Note), Randy Crawford and Joe Sample (No Regrets, PRA), Bobby Hutcherson (Wise One, Kind of Blue), Till Brönner (The Good Life, Verve), and more.
He has been a member of Diana Krall's group since 2001, appearing on CDs and DVDs, notably the Grammy-winning Live in Paris. He has also recorded a CD with Brazilian guitarist Chico Pinheiro, Nova, released in Brazil on Pinheiro's label Buriti, and in the US on Wilson's label Goat Hill Recordings.
Anthony Wilson can also be heard on a number of his father Gerald Wilson's recordings and, since 1986, he held the guitar chair with the Gerald Wilson Orchestra. Since his father's death in 2014, Anthony Wilson has continued the leadership of the Gerald Wilson Orchestra, in performances at the SOKA Jazz Festival (2014), and the Playboy Jazz Festival (2015).
Wilson's main guitar is a custom "Radio Flyer" archtop by luthier John Monteleone; he has also been seen on videos such as "Live in Paris" playing a blond 1958 Gibson Byrdland. Other frequently played guitars include a 1968 Gibson Les Paul Deluxe, and a 1934 Gibson L-30, and a Fender American Vintage series Telecaster with pickups made by Ron Ellis.1997 Anthony Wilson (MAMA/Summit)
1998 Goat Hill Junket (MAMA/Summit)
1999 Adult Themes (MAMA/Summit)
2001 Our Gang (Groove Note)
2005 Savivity (Groove Note)
2006 Power of Nine (Groove Note)
2008 Nova (Goat Hill)
2009 Jack of Hearts (Groove Note)
2011 Campo Belo (Goat Hill)
2011 Seasons: Live at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (Goat Hill)
2016 Frogtown (Goat Hill)
With Gerald WilsonJenna (Discovery, 1989)
State Street Sweet (MAMA/Summit, 1994)
Theme for Monterey (MAMA/Summit, 1997)
New York, New Sound (Mack Avenue, 2003)
Monterey Moods (Mack Avenue, 2007)
Detroit (Mack Avenue, 2009)
Legacy (Mack Avenue, 2011)