Any examination of The Black Sorrows comes down to one person, Joe Camilleri – frontman and the brains behind the band. Awarded ‘Living Legend’ status by Rolling Stone, Camilleri’s career spans an astonishing 50+ years. As a singer, songwriter, saxophonist and producer he is considered one of the most genuinely talented figures in Australian music and is still at the top of his game.
Songs such as So Young, Hit And Run, Shape I’m In, Hold On To Me, Harley and Rose, Chained To The Wheel, Never Let Me Go and The Chosen Ones have become radio staples. As leader of two of Australia’s most successful bands, Jo Jo Zep & The Falcons and The Black Sorrows, Camilleri’s music has become part of Australian music culture, seeing him inducted into the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) Hall of Fame in 2007. Over the years other greats have admired Camilleri’s songwriting – Elvis Costello and John Denver are just two who have recorded cover versions of Joe’s music.
Camilleri launched The Black Sorrows, a loose band of like-minded musicians, in 1984 following the demise of his seminal band, Jo Jo Zep & The Falcons a year earlier. From humble beginnings, playing inner-city cafes around Melbourne and selling albums from the boot of a car, Camilleri transformed The Black Sorrows into one of the most sophisticated ensembles in the country. The independently released album Dear Children, represented a turning point once CBS/Sony stepped in with a world-wide deal. When radio picked up the classic track, Mystified, The Black Sorrows really took flight releasing multi-platinum sellers Hold On To Me, Harley & Rose and The Chosen Ones. The Black Sorrows have won the ARIA Ward for ‘Best Band’, played sell-out shows across Europe and sold more than two million albums worldwide.
The Black Sorrows’ Blues At Bridgetown appearance will see the band reunited with the beautiful vocals of acclaimed sisters in soul, Vika and Linda Bull. For 30 years, the glorious voices of Vika and Linda Bull have comprised one of the most distinctive, versatile and emotionally charged sounds on the Australian music landscape.
Since their multi-platinum conquest of pop radio with the Black Sorrows in the late 1980s, the sisters have forged diverse pathways into soul, gospel, blues, country and the island music of their Tongan ancestry.
Melbourne – Victoria, Australia
Joe Camilleri – vocals, saxophone, guitars, harp
Claude Carranza – guitar, vocals
Mark Gray – bass, vocals
John McCall – keyboards, vocals
Angus Burchall – drums
Vika Bull – vocals
Linda Bull – vocals