Lanois' early work with U2 led to him being hired to produce albums for other top-selling artists. Bono recommended Lanois to Bob Dylan in the late 1980s; in 1989 Lanois produced Dylan's Oh Mercy. Eight years later Dylan and Lanois worked together on Time Out of Mind which won another Grammy Award for Album of the Year in 1997. In his autobiographical Chronicles, Vol. 1, Dylan describes in depth the contentious but rewarding working relationship he developed with Lanois.
Lanois spent most of 1985 producing So, Peter Gabriel's Grammy-nominated, multi-platinum-selling album, released in 1986. Lanois also co-produced Gabriel's platinum selling follow-up, Us.
Lanois was working on Neil Young's record Le Noise in June 2010 when he was hospitalized after suffering multiple injuries in a motorcycle crash in the Silverlake area of Los Angeles. He has since recovered.
Lanois' production is recognizable and notable for its 'big' and 'live' drum sound, atmospheric guitars and ambient reverb.Rolling Stone called Lanois the "most important record producer to emerge in the Eighties."
As recording artist
Daniel Lanois plays with Black Dub in 2011
As well as being a producer, Lanois is also a songwriter, musician and recording artist. He has released several solo albums and film scores. A number of Lanois' songs have been covered by other artists, including Dave Matthews, Jerry Garcia Band, Willie Nelson, Tea Party, Anna Beljin, Isabelle Boulay and Emmylou Harris, and his albums have had some success, particularly in Canada. Lanois plays the guitar, pedal steel, and drums. "Belladonna", an instrumental album released in 2005, was nominated for a Grammy. Lanois also provided an instrumental score for LOUDquietLOUD, a documentary about the Pixies.
Lanois premiered a documentary entitled Here Is What Is at the Toronto Film Festival in 2007. The film chronicles the recording of his album of the same name, and includes footage of the actual recording. The album Here Is What Is was released, first by download, then in compact disc, in late 2007 and early 2008. Soon after, Lanois released a three-disc recording called Omni.
In October 2009, Lanois started a project called Black Dub which features Lanois on guitar, Brian Blade on drums, and Daryl Johnson on bass, along with multi-instrumentalist/singer Trixie Whitley. They released a self-titled album in 2010.
engineered/mixed by Alvaro Villagra, Andy Grassi, Anton Pukshansky, Benny Faccone, Chris Theis, Commissioner Gordon, David Frazer, David Thoener, Glenn Kolotkin, Jeff Poe, Jim Gaines, Jim Scott, John Gamble, John Karpowich, John Seymour, Matty Spindel, Mike Couzzi, Steve Farrone, Steve Fontano, T-Ray, Tom Lord-Alge, Tony Prendatt & Warren Riker; produced by Alex Gonzales, Art Hodge, Charles Goodan, Clive Davis, Dante Ross, Dust Brothers, Fher Olvera, Jerry 'Wonder' Duplessis, K. C. Porter, Lauryn Hill, Matt Serletic, Stephen M. Harris & Wyclef Jean
engineered/mixed by Brian Paturalski, Chris Carmouche, Darrell Thorp, Dexter Simmons, John Frye, Kevin Davis, Matt Still, Moka Nagatani, Neal H. Pogue, Padraic Kernin, Pete Novak, Reggie Dozier, Robert Hannon, Terrence Cash & Vincent Alexander; master engineered by Bernie Grundman & Brian Gardner; produced by André 3000, Big Boi & Carl Mo
engineered/mixed by Al Schmitt, Ed Thacker, Joel W. Moss, John Harris, Mark Fleming, Pete Karam, Robert Fernandez, Seth Presant & Terry Howard; master engineered by Doug Sax & Robert Hadley; produced by Don Mizell, Herbert Waltl, John R. Burk, Phil Ramone & Terry Howard