Dan Wilson is a singer, songwriter, producer, multi-instrumentalist, and occasional cartoonist. He is best known as the lead singer of the band Semisonic, for which he wrote the Grammy-nominated smash “Closing Time” as well as other international hits including “Secret Smile” and “Chemistry.” Prior to that, he was a member of the band Trip Shakespeare, whose long-haired psychedelia influenced a generation of Midwestern bands long after their breakup in the early 90s.
Since Semisonic, Dan has released two solo albums: Free Life (produced with Rick Rubin) and Live at the Pantages. He has also become a highly sought-after songwriting collaborator, perhaps due to his slow-drip brew of philosophic and artistic seriousness, dry Midwestern humor (well-known to his live audiences and evident in his online sketchbook,) and songwriting, performing and production skills. As a songwriter and producer, he has worked with a diverse group of artists including Adele, Dixie Chicks, John Legend, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Taylor Swift, Jim James, Pink, Dierks Bentley, Nas, Josh Groban, Weezer, Carole King, and many others. “I’ve heard people describe my list of collaborators as ‘eclectic,’” he says. “But there’s a lot of consistency there, too. I’m interested in writing only with great musical artists, people who have a fascinating vision and want to push themselves to their limits.”
Dan contributed three songs to Adele’s album, 21, including the hit “Someone Like You,” which he also produced, thus earning himself a Grammy for Album of the Year. A few years earlier, Wilson took home a Song of the Year Grammy for “Not Ready to Make Nice,” one of six songs he co-wrote for the Dixie Chicks’ award-winning album Taking the Long Way.
Wilson is currently finishing up his third solo album, which will be released in the spring of 2014.