||This article includes a list of references, related reading or external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks inline citations. (June 2011)|
Wharton performing in 2011
|Birth name||Darren Leigh Wharton|
24 December 1962 |
Failsworth, Lancashire, England, United Kingdom
|Genres||Rock, hard rock, heavy metal|
|Instruments||Vocals, keyboards, keytar, organ, minimoog|
|Years active||1979 – present|
|Associated acts||Thin Lizzy, Dare|
Darren Wharton (born Darren Leigh Wharton, 24 December 1962) is a British keyboardist, singer and songwriter. He has fronted his own band, Dare, since 1985, but first came to attention as a member of Thin Lizzy.
Wharton was born in Failsworth, Lancashire. Thin Lizzy had not had a keyboard player since their early gigs in Ireland, and Wharton was contacted by Phil Lynott while performing with a cover band. He was only 17 when he contributed keyboards to their 1980 album Chinatown. By the following year on the album Renegade he had become an official member of the band, co writing the opening track "Angel of Death" with Lynott.
Wharton continued with the band on the follow-up Thunder And Lightning in 1983, having a greater share in the writing credits, most notably on "The Sun Goes Down", but that year Lynott announced the break-up of Thin Lizzy.
Wharton also worked with Lynott on the latter's 1982 solo recording The Philip Lynott Album where he played on most of the record's eleven tracks, and provided the striking piano solo on the single "Old Town". In 1999 Darren reunited with Thin Lizzy touring Europe and the US documented on the 2000 live album One Night Only.
He resurfaced with his own band Dare, which had formed in 1985, and its 1988 album Out of Silence. Following his move to North Wales in 1992, their music has come to reflect a more Celtic influence. After forming his own label Legend Records, the 2001 Dare album Belief was featured on Terry Wogan's BBC Radio 2 breakfast show when the single "White Horses" was played every week for three months. In 2004, now signed to Warners ADA Music, Dare released their Beneath the Shining Water album. The first single "Sea of Roses" was again playlisted by Terry Wogan on BBC Radio Two. 2009 saw the release of Dare's sixth studio album Arc of the Dawn.
After John Sykes' departure from Thin Lizzy in 2009, Scott Gorham set to work on creating the latest line-up of Thin Lizzy, announced in May 2010. Wharton rejoined Lizzy as did original drummer Brian Downey, and original post-Lynott bass guitarist Marco Mendoza. New to the line up were vocalist Ricky Warwick of the Almighty and Def Leppard guitarist Vivian Campbell although the latter was subsequently replaced by Richard Fortus and then Damon Johnson. Thin Lizzy toured extensively since 2010 and began work on their first studio album since 1983, although it was ultimately decided not to release any new material as Thin Lizzy, and it will be released as a Black Star Riders album in May 2013. Wharton decided against joining Black Star Riders in order to concentrate on Dare and other projects. He released his seventh Dare studio album Calm Before the Storm 2 on 1 October 2012.
He also has a son called Paris who takes on lead guitar duties on the track "Circles" from the album Arc of the Dawn.
with Thin Lizzy
with Philip Lynott
- The Philip Lynott Album (1982)
- Out of the Silence (1988)
- Blood from Stone (1991)
- Calm Before the Storm (1998)
- Belief (2001)
- Beneath the Shining Water (2004)
- The Power of Nature (2005) (live album)
- Arc of the Dawn (2009)
- Calm Before the Storm 2 (2012)