I am Dianne Wilkinson, and I am a songwriter of Southern Gospel music. My first recorded song was in 1976 and I am still active and writing full time. I am contracted to Daywind Publishing, and very happy to be. I write for a broad range of SG artists, but I have had the most cuts on the male quartets, and I dearly love to write Quartet songs. My web site is in need of updating, but at www.diannewilkinson.com
you will find a bio page on me, and an index of the songs that have been recorded, by who, etc. I have been very blessed…love what I do!
ML: Many people may not be aware that you actually grew up singing with your family, before your writing career ever “took off”, so to speak. Tell us a little bit about that, if you would.
DW: I grew up in a musical family. I started singing and playing piano in a trio with my mother and aunt when I was 12 years old. We had a live radio program early on Sunday morning, and sang all around a three state area where our home was…Blytheville, Arkansas. We went to Singings at Ellis Auditorium in Memphis and I got to hear the great quartets of the Fifties and Sixties when I was just a little girl. I learned to love harmony and great chords back then, and I know God made that happen. I sang with those dear ladies till I was a young adult. They are singing in Heaven’s choir now…saving me a place. Thankful for them!
ML: You have written over 1,000 songs in your lifetime. To me, this shows that the longer you walk with Christ, the more you learn about Him and the more you have to share through song. Does the writing process get any easier as time progress or does it stay the same, for you?
DW: I feel very strongly about my relationship with the Lord having everything to do with any success my writing could ever have. He gifted me to write, and He called me to do it. I want to be obedient to Him as much as I possibly can. I don’t really see any difference in my approach to writing as the years have gone by. I still write when I am inspired by an idea or a thought. Great preaching has inspired many of my songs. I write on my own, and did exclusively for the first 25 years of my career, but God led me into co-writing as well some years back, and I love both. When writing on my own, often the lyrics and melody come at the same time. I still write with a legal pad and pen…and when I pick up the pen, it seems the words just come. I write with some great writers, and I do that best on a long distance basis. I live alone (I am a widow), and I love to write at home where there are no distractions. I love to get a verse or a chorus from a great writer like Rebecca Peck, and finish it up and send it to her, etc…till we know it’s done. I can’t even fully explain how much I love the songwriting process. And I love pitching songs almost as much!
ML: What is God currently teaching you during this season of your life?
DW: God is teaching me much about songwriting today in a business that has changed a lot over the many years I have been in it. He has taught me that the doctrinal truth in a song will always be the most important thing…whether it is traditional or progressive SG, Country Gospel, Bluegrass Gospel, etc. Songs about the Cross, the Blood, the plan of salvation, the Deity of Jesus Christ and His soon return will always be needed. He is teaching me to pay attention to the needs of the artists who contact me for songs. Many other things…too many to mention. May it ever be so!