Gary Wright

  • Singer, songwriter and keyboardist born in 1943 from Cresskill New Jersey.
  • Wright was a child actor, performing on TV and on Broadway. As a teenager, he played keyboards and sang in rock bands, and in 1959 he made a recording with a friend which eventually was released as a single. He felt that a music career was too unstable, and went to college to become a doctor, specializing in psychology and eventually studying in Germany after attending medical colleges in the U.S. In 1967, he abandoned his plan to become a doctor, and instead toured locally with the band he formed, called The New York Times. He met others in the music industry, and he moved to London, joining a band that evolved into the group Spooky Tooth.
  • Between 1968 and 1970, Spooky Tooth released 3 albums, with Wright handling much of the song writing. Their music had a progressive/psychedelic rock sound. The band broke up in 1970, and Wright began a solo career. That year, he released his debut album, Extraction. A second album, Footprint, was released the following year – neither album charted. During this period, Wright performed as a session keyboardist for several prominent acts, including George Harrison, Harry Nilsson, B.B. King and Jerry Lee Lewis.
  • In 1972, Spooky Tooth reformed, and 3 more albums were released before they disbanded in 1974. Still unable to break through with a hit, Wright returned to New Jersey to work on a new album. By now, he was skilled at performing with synthesizers, and he decided to record an album that primarily used keyboards for the music. The result was his masterpiece – The Dream Weaver, released in 1975. Only 1 track on the album includes a guitar piece – everything else is keyboards, with some drum support. Two singles from the album peaked at #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 – the title track Dream Weaver and Love Is Alive. Dream Weaver is a personal favorite of mine – it’s the first hit song to be predominately produced by synthesizers.
  • Wright was unable to match the success of The Dream Weaver with his later work. His next 2 albums again were predominately made with synthesizers, but singles did not chart. His only other single to break into the Top 40 was 1981’s Really Wanna Know You, which peaked at #16.
  • In the 80s, Wright contributed songs to several movie soundtracks, and in 1992, he re-recorded Dream Weaver for inclusion in the soundtrack for the film Wayne’s World. By the late 80s, he turned to world music – albums in 1988, 1995 and 1999 were released featuring percussionists and vocalists from India and Brazil.
  • In 2004, there was a reunion with Spooky Tooth, including a new album. In 2008, he joined Ringo Starr’s band for a summer tour, and he released an instrumental album of new age music. In 2009, there were several Spooky Tooth concerts, and his most recent solo album, Connected, was released – this album was a return to his rock/pop roots.
  • Take a trip into the ethereal world of Dream Weaver. Wright wrote the song after visiting India with George Harrison – he became fascinated by Indian culture and philosophy. He read a poem by Paramahansa Yogananda that referred to the idea of the mind weaving dreams, which inspired him to write Dream Weaver. As he describes it, “‘Dream Weaver, I believe you can get me through the night…’ was a song about someone with infinite compassion and love carrying us through the night of our trials and suffering. None other than God Himself.”

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