In 1987, after a chance meeting with Murray Thom, ex head of CBS records, he and Murray decided to record a piano album. This became the first of the best selling Piano By Candlelight series, and it entered the charts at number one in its first week.
Eight more albums in the series were recorded over the next twelve years, the second (Piano By Candlelight 2) establishing a record for most copies sold in New Zealand of a locally recorded album.
In 1992, Murray Thom licensed the first three albums to Time Life Music in America. The resulting 2-CD set became one of their best sellers ever, selling in excess of one million copies in the USA alone, and giving Carl the distinction of being the only New Zealand solo artist to have a certified platinum album in the USA. The albums have also sold in large quantities in most European countries, the Far East, South America and Canada.
Besides producing his own albums, Carl has also found time to arrange and produce many CDs for some of Australasia's most famous performers, perhaps the most notable of these being Derek Metzger, Rob Guest, Tina Cross and Sir Howard Morrison. He was also arranger and musical director of Kiri Te Kanawa's "Maori Songs", another platinum album. Dame Kiri sang his arrangement of "E Te Tarakihi" live from Gisborne in the first live broadcast of the New Millennium, to a television audience of over a hundred million people.
Other production successes are the two Espresso Guitar albums, featuring Martin Winch. Carl arranged, produced and recorded these at his studio in Auckland's North Shore. Both were platinum sellers.
In 2000, Carl was commissioned to write the music for Buzz & Poppy, a 52-episode childrens' 3-D animated series. This is now showing in twenty countries and won Carl the award for best original music at the TV Guide TV Awards in 2002.
For the first two years of the Millennium, his major project was to re-record the tracks that were on the first Candlelight albums. These were originally recorded using sampled instruments, as there was no budget for real instruments in those early years. Now they have been digitally re-recorded with members of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, and compiled into a ten CD set entitled "together". The production of this collection is one of the high points of Carl's thirty-five years as a professional musician.
Oprah Winfrey featured the collection nationwide in the USA on "Oprah's Favorite Things" in 2002. She told her TV audience that "together" was "her favorite of all the favorites". You can find details of "together" and also listen to some tracks on www.togethercollection.com
Carl arranged and produced three more platinum-selling albums: Into The West (2005) and Montage(2006) for Russian singer YULIA, and ELIZABETH MARVELLY'S debut album, released in 2007.
In 2004, he was appointed Musical Director for the first Television New Zealand season of "Dancing With The Stars", which, as in other countries, was the rating sensation of the year. Five series later, he has completed five series of the top-rating show
Currently Carl has a new double-CD album on release, The Very Best Of Carl Doy Detalis on http://www.thommusic.com
Earlier this year (2009) he arranged and performed two sellout concerts with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, in Auckland and Wellington.
Carl is still composing and recording under Kathy's watchful eye and will be recording again very soon after Christmas.