Having been exposed to a range of music genres as a child, ranging from 60s and 70s Motown and Stax records, to Chicago Blues, and being encouraged by her father to start gigging the local pub circuit whilst still in her early teens, it was clear to see that Dani Wilde was already well on her way to becoming somewhat of a special talent.
When asked what made Dani decide to become a blues singer she replied “Well, when I was 14, I went to Bishopstock Blues Festival in the UK and that was where I saw the likes of contemporary blues singers Sue Foley, Shemekia Copeland and Susan Tedeschi perform. Before then I had only heard the old Chicago players like John Lee and Muddy Waters but to see young female artists playing the blues like that really blew me away and so I made it my mission to follow in Susan Tedeschi’s footsteps. Her performance was inspirational and had a life changing effect on me in regards to my music career.”
Young British Blues & Soul Songstress 'Dani Wilde' first broke in to the public eye at the tender age of 17 opening for Steeleye Span's Maddie prior. Having been brought up listening to her fathers record collection ranging from Bob Dylan to Motown, Stax and Chess records, Dani's childhood dreams were always of singing, songwriting and performing.
Dani grew up in Hullavington, a small Wiltshire village, just a few doors down from popular jazz artist Jamie Cullam. Dani says "Jamie is quite a few years older than me so I really don't remember him that well from School. I really admire how he took an un-commercial genre of music and managed to cross over to a mainstream pop audience. I would love to do that with the blues!"
At the age of 18, Dani moved to Brighton where she spent three years achieving her 1st Class Ba Hons Degree in Music whilst also promoting herself as an artist. In 2006, she was noticed by Jools Holland's younger brother 'Christopher Holland'... One thing led to another and by Christmas that year, she was opening for Jools Holland at The Royal Albert Hall.
News of Dani's incredibly soulful voice, unique finger picking guitar style and growing success soon spread and in September 2007 she was picked up by prestigious international blues record label 'Ruf Records'. Dani recalls "Signing to Ruf was a dream come true for me. More than anything I wanted to follow in the footsteps of the contemporary blues women I admire such as Susan Tedeschi and Shemekia Copeland. Thomas Ruf gave me that opportunity!"
In January 2008, with the release of her debut album 'Heal My Blues' , Dani Wilde embarked on the 'Blues Caravan' tour of the UK, Europe and America. Each night she had the opportunity to open up for her hero's Sue Foley, Candye Kane and Deborah Coleman. Following this tour, Dani continued to tour the USA opening for Candye Kane and Robben Ford as well as headlining European tours with her young British band. "Touring 'Heal my blues' was such a learning experience for me. I found myself on the same bill as my hero's, such as Koko Taylor for example, at some of the biggest blues festivals in the world... I had a lot to live up to!"
With regular BBC Radio 2 airplay and magazines from Blues Matters to The Times and Classic Rock giving glowing reviews, Dani Wilde continued to develop as an artist. In March 2010, she went back into the studio to record her second album for Ruf entitled SHINE. The record, produced by legendary British blues producer Mike Vernon really has captured Dani at her very best. "Working with Mike Vernon was such an incredible experience. He is so tremendously talented and creative. I really wanted the new record to capture my vocals at their very best; and from a songwriting and production standpoint I wanted to have a real mix of my blues and soul roots combined with more contemporary influences such as Alanis Morrisette and Joss Stone. I really feel we have achieved just that."
Shine, which features Van Morrison's horn section and pianist, is due to be released in August this year followed by tours of the UK and Europe; and 2011 will see Dani back on the world-wide Blues Caravan tour. In the meantime, Dani is continuing to fundraise for her on-going charity work in the slums of Embu, Kenya... "Every year I visit County Primary school and Toto Love Orphanage in Kenya. The level of poverty there is so horrific. HIV and aids are also a huge problem. Seeing the hardships these kids have to endure is so heartbreaking. With help and donations from my fans, we have been able to improve these children's education and are able to give them opportunities that they will always remember and be proud of. So many more children in Embu desperately need our help. Please do read more about my work in Kenya on my website WWW.DANIWILDE.COM".