Tiki Black
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Tiki Black

Manchester, United Kingdom | Established. Jan 01, 2009 | SELF

Manchester, United Kingdom | SELF
Established on Jan, 2009
Solo Folk Singer/Songwriter




"Extract of Junkyard Jude @ Mello Mello, Liverpool - by Peter Robinson"

"The crowd were then encouraged to swap one man and his guitar for one woman and her piano in the form of TIKI BLACK. Manchester-based by way of Paris and Cameroon, Black offers gentle vignettes of highly emotional and deeply personal songs. A short set, comprising just five songs, this was a performance that really gave the impression of having been invited into the intimate surroundings of the artist’s rehearsal room, such was the introverted lyrical content. From opener Open Your Eyes to the french language Le Cinquieme Element these were sparse songs, making use of slow-building piano to accompany fragile and enchanting vocals. The former in particular, progresses with a haunting quality, exploiting a minimalist structure to great affect, giving it a power disproportionate to its quietude. Elsewhere, Free Like Smoke demonstrates that music can be just as much about the silence as the notes in between. There is obvious talent here and these are songs that tug at the heartstrings without ever giving the impression they were written purely to do so. Open Your Eyes contains the line: ‘do not hide in your cocoon’. Tiki Black would do well to follow this advice. " - Glasswerk


Out Of The Black (album), 2013
Free Like Smoke (single), 2014



'The voice is the instrument that draws us in, it can challenge or comfort us, awaken us or lull us, inspire or reassure. Tiki Black has a voice that can do all of this and moreWarm, embracing and timeless'. Spiral Earth

'Tiki Black is the perfect poster child for what it means to be a genuine Indie performer . Blacks music speaks to a generation that needs a voice that knows their pain, joy, achievements, failures, and struggles. She sings from the heart, and Blacks music pours out her soul to her listenersthis publication is in love with this artist's music'. Junior's Cave

'Songs that tug at the heartstrings without ever giving the impression they were written purely to do so'. Glasswerk

Sometimes an artist emerges with a sound so different that its hard to figure out where it came from. Tiki Black is such an enigma, her unique voice and expressive keyboard style having led some to compare her to the poetic, soulful sound of Nina Simone or the narrative lyricism of Leonard Cohen. When you delve a little deeper into her background you realise this was never going to be someone who fitted easily into genre labels.

Born in Paris to Cameroonian parents, family hardship required her to be self-reliant from an early age. Constantly moving around and shifting between both countries, music provided a precious haven of consistency in her life. Tiki treasured the resonance she found in Cameroonian artists such as Manu Dibango and Eboa Lotin, and opened herself to the melancholic beauty of French Chanson, an influence also on the likes of Scott Walker, Terry Hall and Elvis Costello. Furthermore, when at the age of 14 she discovered there was a piano in her new school in Paris, she immersed herself in a musical instruction book donated by a friend and discovered the work of Chopin.

While the upheaval of regularly moving around proved unsettling, it also led her to embrace and explore music as a world beyond borders or boundaries. During a period of her childhood spent in Africa in the port of Douala, she fondly recalls hearing music from far-flung places like Latin and North America and going to watch Bollywood or Chinese films in local cinemas. Later she would reverently translate and study the lyrics of artists as diverse as Caetano Veloso, Bob Marley, Herbert Grnemeyer and John Lennon. As Tiki reflects, 'If my music starts from personal experiences, it draws more universal lessons by looking across time and place at similar situations and emotions.'

Now resident in Manchester, Tikis stunning debut album Out Of The Black on NO Sugar addEd Records is a remarkable collection of songs that celebrate both the strength and fragility of the human spirit. Enhanced by a delicate blend of Western and African rhythmic and stringed instruments, the songs and arrangements convey a singer-songwriter who has the ability to frame her music and lyrics in meticulous and intricate detail without ever losing an intense, twilight intimacy with the listener.

Band Members