Thursday, July 29, 2010

a short Blackumentary

It is becoming increasingly rare to find an artist these days with lyrical depth, melodic strength and vocal purity. With the foundation of the music business slipping on the shifting sand, labels aren't equipped to build long term careers for the artists signed to their revolving door rosters.

This leaves many singers and bands to move forward on their own. For some, it can be more lucrative - financially, artistically or both. Either way, the advent of the internet allows the world to be introduced to artists that otherwise would wither away in the dark hallways of large, crumbling corporations. That paradigm change has undone one business model has given birth to another. It's all a matter of harnessing the power at hand.

Thankfully, Colin Vearncombe, aka Black, has taken the reigns of his career and found a footing in the new web world which allows his dedicated fanbase to easily access his exquisite output. The heartbreaking beauty of his music has resonated with me for more than twenty years. At the moment, IMHO, he's delivering some of his best work ever. As a songwriter, I am deeply humbled and awestruck by his immense talent.

Colin has seen a resurgence over the last few years. He released two magnificent albums in the last twelve months. Some artists can barely scrape together one half-solid longplayer in twice the time. Both "The Given", attributed to his birth name, and "Water On Stone", which is housed under the Black moniker, are epic. Strikingly gorgeous and breathtaking at every turn.

While he maintains his distinct identity, the subtle influences are audible. Roy Orbison, Scott Walker, Ian Curtis and Jimmy Webb are all suitably attired in Colin's passionately expressive vocal delivery and stirring lyrical construction.

Check out this recently produced mini-documentary about Colin and his music.

If you think Black is little more than "Wonderful Life", I urge you to purchase one of the most recent elpees from the Black/Colin Vearncombe back catalog - or Blackatalog, as so cleverly identified on Colin's official website. Do yourself a favor and bathe in the glorious, sepia tones of his achingly sweet voice. I think you'll agree, he's a singer songwriter for the ages.


  1. ahh, the ORIGINAL Wonderful Life

  2. I think this guy's a titan, but I just don't have 10 minutes to watch a video on the web. Pathetic, i know. I started watching it but I found I had wasted a minute of my life before CV was even in shot!