Danny Deardorff is not your typical musician, neither visually or thematically. In a world that often judges you at face value and latches on to the more familiar, it’s wonderful to see a man like Deardorff doing what he loves, regardless of preconceived perceptions. And for more than three decades he has inspired people of all ages with his words and music.
His songs have a pure sweetness about it them that cannot be manufactured. When you hear them, you know it is coming right from his big heart. On the surface, it might be easy to disregard his sentiments as cornball. Really, it’s just the fact we have become such a jaded society that it’s difficult for us to accept such sincerity. Like it or not, people do genuinely feel this way and should never be embarrassed about it. Deardorff is who he is, regardless. It’s yet another symbol of his tremendous courage.
I was first introduced to him through the album Ma La Lady by Danny & Joyce from 1975. (Several of these songs were used on Danny’s best-known album, Deardorff & Joseph, a collaboration with Marcus Joseph.) I don’t know who Joyce is — she is not even listed on the album credits — but it doesn’t really matter. The music is a wonderful time capsule that takes you back to the mid-1970s, reminding you of a much simpler time. His songwriting style is very much rooted in his devotion to the Bahá’í faith — this is lyrically and emotionally evident. “Earth,” “The Little Kings of Earth” and the title track are personal favorites.
Deardorff has been recording without pause ever since. Living in the Pacific Northwest, he has done a great deal of work with Tickle Tune Typhoon, who perform children’s shows in the name of love and world peace. Deardorff also operates the Mythsinger Foundation.
Now I won’t claim to know and understand everything about him, but I sure do like what I have heard from him thus far, and I certainly hopes he continues making music and following his dreams until the end of his days.