Danny was a few years older than me, and while that made little difference in later years, it was significant when I was in my teens. In those years being older, he was in some ways a mentor, and introduced me to a number of things, including music. One of those artists was Alan Parsons. If you know Alan Parsons, you know he is a legend in the music industry. Prior to forming the Alan Parsons Project, his first band in 1975, he was a producer and engineer. He was the assistant engineer for the Beatles on Let It Be and Abbey Road, and engineer for The Hollies’ albums that included the songs He Ain't Heavy He's My Brother, and The Air That I Breathe. He was the engineering genius behind Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon. He has continued to work producing and/or engineering for Paul McCartney, Sarah Brightman, Steve Harley and Cockney Rebel, John Miles, Al Stewart, and others.
It was the Alan Parsons Project that Danny would introduce me to, so when he was scheduled to perform here locally, I really wanted to see him. After the concert with his latest CD, A Valid Path, in hand, I managed to persuade my way back stage.
As I stood in front of Alan Parsons, "Mr. Parsons, it's a real thrill to meet you," I said, handing him the CD for his autograph. Inexplicably, I found myself telling him about Danny being responsible for introducing me to his music some thirty years ago. After nearly a two hour performance – which was outstanding – then being hounded by autograph seekers and everyone else vying for his time, the last thing I would expect is his undivided attention as I told him this story. Rather than signing the CD while I spoke to him, he put the CD at his side and listened to me talk about Danny. As strangely as I found myself talking to him about Danny, I asked him to sign it, to Mike and Dan. He did, apologizing for not being sure he had signed it clearly in the dark area we were in. I thought of taking a picture with him, but not wanting to take anymore of his time, I shook his hand and thanked him.
Walking away I was amazed how affable and gracious Alan Parsons was, and sorry Danny wasn’t there with me. I don’t know what Danny would have said to him, but I know it would have been something to make us all laugh.