Dan Wilson has been a cult hero of American smart pop music since the late '80s as guitarist with the bands Trip Shakespeare and Semisonic, and in the 21st century he's quietly embarked on a solo career. Born in Barrington, Illinois on March 25, 1969, Wilson grew up in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and like his brother Matt Wilson he developed a passion for music and learned how to play guitar in his teens. Wilson studied art at Harvard University, but after graduating, he returned to Minneapolis to discover that his brother Matt's band Trip Shakespeare -- a locally popular trio fusing pop hooks with a psychedelic sense of aural wanderlust -- were thinking of adding a second guitar player. Dan joined Trip Shakespeare shortly after the release of their first album, 1986's Applehead Man, and made his recorded debut with the group on 1988's Are You Shakespearienced? Trip Shakespeare signed a deal with A&M Records in 1989, and they recorded three albums for the label, 1990's Across the Universe, 1991's Lulu, and 1992's Volt. Unfortunately, the group's following never grew beyond an enthusiastic cult, and A&M opted not to release Volt, which instead came out through Minneapolis indie label Twin/Tone.