D’Arby’s debut solo album, Introducing the Hardline According to Terence Trent D’Arby, released in July 1987, is his best-known commercial work. The album produced hits including “If You Let Me Stay”, “Wishing Well”, “Dance Little Sister”, and “Sign Your Name”.
He expressed a high opinion of his debut album, brashly claiming that it was the most important album since the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper. The album earned him a Grammy Award in March 1988 in the category Best R&B Vocal Performance, Male. In that same year, he earned a Soul Train Award nomination for Best New Artist.
His follow-up was the album Neither Fish Nor Flesh (1989).
It took four more years and a move to Los Angeles until his next album, Symphony or Damn (1993) was released. The record contained the singles “Delicate” and “She Kissed Me”. It peaked at No. 4 on the UK Albums Chart.
In 1995, D’Arby released Vibrator which was followed by a world tour.
During the 1990s, his relations with his record label Columbia Records became strained, eventually leading to his departure in 1996. He moved to Java Records for one year, during which he recorded Terence Trent D’Arby’s Solar Return, which was not released. In 2000, he bought back the rights to his unreleased album and left the record company as well as his management team, Lippman Entertainment.
In 1999, D’Arby collaborated with INXS to replace his friend, the late vocalist Michael Hutchence, so the band could play at the opening of facilities for the Sydney Olympics.