Friday, February 20, 2009


Here's one for Matias and KSN, and everyone else looking for some old school rock with a groove. The mighty BLACK MERDA was easily missed in the wake of the Hendrix explosion, but the record stands the test of time, even 41 years later. On their eponymous debut, BLACK MERDA ran the gauntlet from heavy riffs through funky soul to Delta blues and the occasional layover in what I can only imagine Syd Barret was hearing in his head around this time. I shared this album with the equally funk-obsessed JAKE LEE DILEMMA, and they had the same reponse: "Where can I get more?". Sadly, BLACK MERDA's sophomore record wasn't released until 1971, by which time the band had embraced a more FAMILY STONE-esque brand of groove. This debut, though, is truly a diamond in the rough. Featuring the twin guitar attack of the Hawkins brothers and a wealth of musical direction, BLACK MERDA's 1967 debut is a 13th Floor REQUIREMENT!

1. Prophet
2. Think of Me
3. Cynthy-Ruth
4. Over and Over
5. Ashamed
6. Reality
7. Windsong
8. Good Luck
9. That's the Way It Goes
10. I Don't Want to Die
11. Set Me Free



Anonymous said...

Thanks for pointing this release out to me. I love it!

aldo said...

Thanks for this one! Great stuff, I keep coming back to it!
Or maybe I should say great shit (not to be interpreted negatively!).
I’ve long known their name but never investigated it further, I thought they were just a 70s band…As for any other Italian, Black Merda would stand out as a name, since “merda” means shit!
Merda is basically an Afro-American phonetical spelling for murder…

I was happy to find out they had a record out as early as 1967 and it’s really cool…it even sounds a bit later to me.
How could it not be overshadowed by The Jimi Hendrix Experience?
Difficult to top that one, this album I understand that came out after it and Hendrix was a major influence in steering their sound towards something a bit more freaky…In fact I was hoping and half expecting something wilder but after the first couple of times I got sucked into this “black shit” sound!
I really like moodier stuff like “Windsong” for example but probably my fave is “Good Luck” more in a kind of Psych-Funk vein or something!
I will have to hear their second album, at least out of curiosity.
For something Funky but also Wild or simply Different you might want to check three homemade African Soundz comps I posted a while back at:

Big Jack said...

Aldo-- Thanks for the heads up, my friend, I'll check the sounds for sure. Glad you dig the grooves of Black Merda, aka, Black Shit (haha!). I'll also get the second record posted for you over the weekend. It's not as solid, but there's still some solid stuff there.

By the way, "Good Luck" is also my favorite.


Luis B said...

I can tell you for sure that merda means "Shit",cause it is a Portuguese word and im from Portugal.You now,kind like "mierda" in Spanish.Keep the good posts,thanks.

Anonymous said...

Hey Luis, "merda" is NOT a "Portugese word", maybe you mean that it is a word IN Portugese. The word "merda" is not exclusive to Portugese, it is a word from Ancient Latin and occurs in other Latin-derived languages besides Portugese such as my language, Italian. So, unfortunately, the unintended consequence of naming the band Black Merda (i.e. supposed to mean "Black Murder"), is that those of us that speak Latin-based languages read it as "Black Sh*t", which is unfortunate, because the band is actually really fantastic.

Olivier said...

In french, we have the word "merde" which means shit also ! All the latin-based languages may have this word, in fact :)

Anonymous said...

Great catch. Thanks!

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