Throwback: Terence Trent D’Arby-Sign Your Name

When Terence Trent D’Arby’s Introducing The Hardline According To Terence Trent D’Arby was released in 1987 it was surrounded with a cloud of intriguing hype. D’Arby said his album was the most important since The Beatles’ Sargeant Pepper’s record and critics compared him to Prince, Michael Jackson and Sam Cooke. A million copies of The Hardline sold internationally within three days and D’Arby’s high-energy performances reminded critics of James Brown. “Sign Your Name” did well chart-wise in the UK but it took longer for The Hardline to gain full recognition in the United States. The song’s video debuted in January of 1988 and “Sign Your Name” became the one sacred artifact that has carried his old name to future generations. D’Arby’s first album won the Grammy for Best Male R&B Performance and the BRIT Award for International Breakthrough Act. He received Grammy and Soul Train Award nominations for Best New Artist.

D’Arby released four albums before changing his name to Sananda Maitreya in 2001. He said he had a series of dreams in 1995 that convinced him of the death of D’Arby and the need for a new identity. The name change was followed by a move to Germany and the launching of his Treehouse Pub record label. As Maitreya, he has released eight albums and continues to tour outside of the United States.

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