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Don Cherry passed away in 1995, and a grief-stricken Eagle-Eye moved back to Stockholm with his girlfriend to clear his head. It was there that he began to earnestly concentrate on songwriting, and took some time to hone a set of original material modeled on the acoustic singer/songwriter tradition, with touches of blues and light funk. Deciding to try his luck in Sweden before the more competitive American marketplace, Cherry recorded his debut album, Desireless, and gave it a low-key release on the Swedish label Diesel in 1997. Gradually, thanks in part to the singles "Save Tonight" and "Falling in Love Again," the album became a hit -- first in Sweden, then Scandinavia, then all across Europe. Desireless was picked up by Sony's Work Group division for American distribution, and was released in the summer of 1998. "Save Tonight" soon began a steady climb up the charts, and buoyed by support from the VH1 set, it eventually peaked in the Top Five. Cherry was red-hot, and Desireless went platinum in the States, selling a total of four million copies worldwide. In the summer of 1999, he appeared on Carlos Santana's vaunted comeback album Supernatural, singing the duet "Wishing It Was."
Cherry toured the world in support of Desireless, and during the massive promotional jaunt his relationship dissolved. The breakup informed his second album, Living in the Present Future, which was released in Europe in 2000. Remixed for American release, the album was retitled Present/Future, sported a different running order with several different tracks, and wasn't released in the U.S. until late 2001. Despite the European success of lead single "Feels So Right," plus a well-received duet with sister Neneh on "Long Way Around," Present/Future didn't attract nearly as much attention in America as its predecessor. ~ Steve Huey