Dan the mid 70’s recording artist
Once my debut album, Dan Hill, was released in 1975, I concentrated solely on my own singing and recording career. Any cover versions of my songs simply came from people hearing my records on the radio or playing them on their living-room stereos. Although some of my songs—such as “You Say You’re Free” and “Hold On” (from my first and second albums, respectively)—were cut by several artists, “Sometimes When We Touch” (which I co-wrote with legendary songwriter Barry Mann) turned into the “mother of all covers.” It enjoyed renditions by singers from every continent, in every style, and was translated into several languages. Tina Turner, Rod Stewart, Barry Manilow, Tammy Wynette, Lynne Anderson, Donny Osmond, Rodney Crowell and Roseanne Cash are only a few of the artists who have covered it.
Despite this interest from other artists, I remained fixated throughout the 70s on my own singing career. I didn’t seriously consider the option of writing for other singers until 1981. That year, over breakfast one morning, I banged out a lyric to a John Parker melody, which was cut by the Latin heartthrob of the day, Camilo Sesto. That cover brought in more royalties for me than Partial Surrender, my album released the same year, which I’d spent 18 months writing and recording. “Hmmm,” I thought to myself. “There’s a message here.”
Indeed. The following year I co-wrote “In Your Eyes” with the brilliant and vastly successful composer Michael Masser. “In Your Eyes” became an international smash for George Benson, actually charting higher in some territories than my original recording of “Sometimes When We Touch.” Jeffrey Osborne also recorded “In Your Eyes,” turning it into an Adult Contemporary (AC) hit in the United States in 1986. It also crossed onto the American R&B charts. The vocal blessings of Benson and Osborne encouraged many other artists to cut the song. I even recorded it myself in 1994, turning it into a duet with Rique Franks; it peaked at #10 on America’s Radio and Records AC charts.