Sunday, March 11, 2012

"If You Let Me Stay" by Terrence Trent D'Arby - March 11th 80's Quest Song/Band of the Day

I remember the build-up to the release of Terence Trent D’Arby’s first solo album, Introducing The Hardline According to Terence Trent D’Arby was a very big deal. He was touted as being the "next coming" in soul music and his voice was compared to greats like Sam Cooke, and Al Green. I bought into the excitement and bought the album. I loved it and played it all the time. When D’Arby was set to go on tour, I thought it was going to be a show to remember. I was nuts to get tickets to his show in Massachusetts (I can’t remember if it was Boston or Worcester). Back in those days there was no internet, so you had to purchase your tickets by calling the ticketing company (usually Ticketmaster) on the telephone. Everyone else who wanted to see the show was also calling in at the very same time trying to buy tickets too, so you would get busy signal after busy signal on the phone unless you were lucky enough to get through to a live ticket seller before the show sold out.
I finally made it through on the line. I was soooo excited! I remember thinking that the lady on the telephone assisting me seemed like a real doofus. It didn’t seem like she even knew who Terrence Trent D’Arby was because she kept pronouncing his last name as "Dee-Arby" instead of "Darby". "What a square," I thought. She also quite annoyed me because she took forever to complete my transaction. Slowly repeated every detail of my purchase, all the while calling him Terrence Trent Dee-Arby. I was really worried that the show would sell out before she would get through her stupid spiel and sell me my ticket already! Finally the transaction was completed. I excitedly waited for my tickets to arrive in the mail. And I waited, and waited, and waited. I got worried when my tickets still hadn’t arrived two weeks prior to the show, so I called Ticketmaster to inquire about them. I learned that the doofus must not have put my order through correctly because there was no record of the sale, no tickets were going to arrive, and I was not going to get to see the show. I was livid.
Terence Trent D’Arby was born in 1962 in New York, NY to a musical family. His father, Reverend James Benjamin Darby, played guitar and had been a big rock and roll fan before becoming a Pentecostal minister, and his mother Frances was a gospel singer, teacher and counselor.. Back then Terence Trent D’Arby was known simply as Terry Darby.
The family relocated to New Jersey, Chicago and finally settled in Deland, Florida when Terry was a teenager. In high school he sang with the DeLand High School Modernaires. He also took up boxing and began training in Orlando, Florida. He won the Golden Gloves lightweight championship and received an offer to join the United States Army and attend boxing school, but his stepfather was adamant that Darby attend college instead.
Darby studied journalism at the University of Central Florida for one year, but quit in 1980. He enlisted in the United States Army so that he could continue boxing and have a chance to be a Golden Gloves contender. He was stationed at Fort Sill in Oklahoma and was next stationed in Frankfurt, Germany with the Third Armored Division (Elvis Presley’s former unit).
In Germany he was denied paratrooper training and assigned to a supply clerk post. He became more interested in the Frankfurt nightlife scene than his army duties, and began singing again. He joined a 9-piece pop-soul band called Touch. In 1983 He went AWOL from the Army and turned himself in just before leaving Germany for London England. In London he briefly performed with a band called The Bojangels, but then signed a solo recording contract with Columbia Records.
In 1987 Darby changed the spelling of his name to D’Arby and in October released his first single "If You Let Me Stay" from his solo album Introducing The Hardline According to Terence Trent D’Arby. It reached #68 on the charts. It was his second single "Wishing Well" that finally earned him fame. It hit #1 on the charts. He had one more #4 hit from this album, a lovely soulful ballad called "Sign Your Name". D’Arby was a natural media manipulator and created quite a buzz for his first album calling it among "the most brilliant debuts from any artist in the past 10 years". The ploy worked and the album sold over a million copies over the first three days of its release, and sold over 14 million copies overall. It earned him a Grammy Award in 1988 for Best R&B Vocal Performance, Male. While his bravado got him lots of press and stirred up public interest, his haughtiness began to work against him with the critics. Critics dug deeper and were happy to report on discrepancies in his early bio.
In 1989 he released his second album, Terence Trent D’Arby’s Neither Fish nor Flesh. The critics like the album, but it was a commercial flop, reaching only #61 on the charts, and spawning no hit singles.
D’Arby moved to Los Angeles, and after 4 years released another album 1993’s Terence Trent D’Arby’s Symphony or Damn (Exploring the Tension Inside the Sweetness). It sold even worse than his second album charting at only #119; however, spawned one Top 100 single, a duet with singer Des’ree, called "Delicate" which got to #74 on the American charts; however, did well in the U.K. rising to #4 on the charts there.
In 1995 he released TTD Vibrator which mixed soul, funk, hard rock, Latin, and gospel music and went on a successful world tour, yet the album was a commercial failure. D’Arby threatened to retire as a performer and work instead as a producer. In the 1990’s his relationship with his record company, Columbia Records, was very strained. He left the label in 1996.
In 1995 Following a series of dreams D’Arby started calling himself Sananda Maitreya and officially changed his name in 2001 proclaiming that Terence Trent D’Arby was dead.
In 1999 Maitreya performed with INXS (their lead singer Michael Hutchence died in 1997) at the opening ceremony for the Sydney Olympics in Australia.
In 2001 he moved to Munich, Germany and started an independent record label called Treehouse Pub. He released his first album in 6 years on his new label, Wildcard. Initially the album was available for free on his website and later released commercial through Universal Music, and then again on Maitreya’s own label.
In 2002 Maitreya moved to Milan, Italy and began working on songs for his next album, Angels & Vampires Volume I. The songs were released in chapters on Weedshare allowing fans to hear the work as it evolved. In July 2005 the fully mastered album was released on MP3 on his website, and later on CD.
In 2005 he released Angels & Vampires Volume II, again releasing songs chapter by chapter, finishing the album in April 2006 and selling it online. At the end of 2007 a limited 2-CD edition of Angels & Vampires was released.
He released another album on his website in 2009 called Nigor Mortis: A Critical Mass, and later on CD. His 2010 album was called The Sphinx.
Maitreya continues to make music in Milan, Italy where he lives with his family, and tours around Europe with his band The Nudge Nudge.
Over the years he appeared in two films and played singer Jackie Wilson on the television mini series Shake Rattle and Roll: An American Love Story. His music has appeared in numerous movies including Frankie and Johnny (1991), and his song "Right Thing, Wrong Way appears during the end credits of Beverly Hills Cop III. In 1996 he co-wrote the song "Letting Go" with Hans Zimmer for the movie "The Fan" which starred Robert DeNiro. In 2007 three of his songs appeared in the Judd Apatow movie Knocked Up. His song "What Shall I Do?" was featured in an episode of the American television series Girlfriends on UPN.


Sweetheart listen,
I know the last few pages
Haven't been good for the both of us
And I've caused you a lot of grief
But put those bags down, o.k.?
Before you make a decision like that,
Please just listen to me
'Cos I don't want you to leave.
I definately don't want you to leave
Just hear me out.

Honey, don't leave me now
With my head on my shoulders wrong
Have I done something wrong for you to leave?
I know I've been careless, girl
And I must apologize
I'll try better next time, baby
If you let me stay

If you let me stay
I'll say what I should've said
If you let me stay
I should have said that I love you
It you let me stay
And I should have said it from my heart
If you let me stay

How can I compensate
For my indiscretions, dear
Tell me it's not too late
That I'd love to hear
If you walk out on me
You will see a grown man cry
I didn't miss my water
Till my well ran dry

But if you let me stay
If you let me stay
I'll say what I should've said
If you let me stay
I should have said that I love you
It you let me stay
And I should have said it from my heart
If you let me stay

Your pretensions aim for gullible fools
And now who needs you anyway?
I'll get mine elsewhere
I taught the school
You will regret it someday

If you let me stay
I'll say what I should've said
If you let me stay
I should have said that I love you
It you let me stay
And I should have said it from my heart
If you let me stay

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