Revisiting my extensive music collection, one artist at a time
Scottish trio Danny Wilson released two albums at the tail end of the 1980’s, scoring two Top 40 hits in the UK and just one in the US, so American audiences would only remember them as one-hit wonders courtesy of their gorgeous single “Mary’s Prayer.” For those of us who dove into their albums, though, they were a brilliant band with numerous songs that should have been mega-hits. Their music still brings us joy whenever we play them, even 30+ years later. I previously wrote about their “cross between Steely Dan and Burt Bacharach, with hints of lounge music” in my TWO AND THROUGH post back in December 2014, and you can read the portion about their 1987 debut, Meet Danny Wilson, below.
For more information on this series, please read the opening paragraph of the first post, which featured the debut album from Led Zeppelin.
From TWO AND THROUGH – My Favorite Two-Album Artists:
The first time I heard “Mary’s Prayer,” the debut hit single by Scottish band Danny Wilson, I fell in love with their slick, slightly jazzy pop sound and especially the lead vocals of frontman Gary Clark. A friend of mine who was also a fan rightly described them as a cross between Steely Dan and Burt Bacharach, with hints of lounge music as well in some of the drum & keyboard sounds they used on their debut album. The other tracks on Meet Danny Wilson are in a similar vein, at least sonically speaking, but they’re stylistically diverse and they certainly don’t deserve their one-hit-wonder status. On the debut alone there are at least five songs that could/should have been hits: “Davy,” “Nothing Ever Goes To Plan,” “Steamtrains To The Milky Way,” “A Girl I Used To Know” and album closer “I Won’t Be Here When You Get Home.”
I still play both Danny Wilson albums frequently, and although they make me nostalgic for that era they never sound dated to me. That may not be the case, however, if you’re hearing them for the first time, but hopefully you’ll appreciate the quality of the songs.
For anyone hearing them for the first time, how does their music sound to you? Fresh or dated? If you’re already a fan, do you agree that these songs have held up extremely well over the decades?