I discovered Dave (aka Santan Dave) watching an interview on “Love Music Hate Racism”. He’s released a few EP’s and singles over the last few years and this March, released his debut album, Psychodrama. Black is the third track from that release. The entire album is an incredible work of art, it is a deep glimpse into his life and the way he weaves lyrics is truly a gift.
I am white and there is no way I could ever say that I know what life is like when you are black. I can seek out knowledge from those who do know and then allow that to impact my perspective, but no white person can say they know. Music can be a great educator and provide those who are seeking, a chance to learn. The song Black provides a perspective that is real, it is honest, it is stark. You cannot listen to this song and walk away uninformed, not if you are really listening…
In early 2014, I had the privilege to visit Northwest Africa. This was the first time I had ever really left my circle of comfort. While I had previously traveled many parts of North America, I had never really stepped far enough out to see a different perception of the world. The people I met there and the world I saw, taught me how incredibly limited my perspective was. The world is so much bigger than your view.
Is it really a life well lived if you never take the time to see another’s perspective?
Listening to this song was another opportunity to see outside of what I know… Dave is a brilliant writer; this song is a gift. I am not afraid to admit how ridiculously naïve and ill-informed I felt when he talks about how we have named countries for what they trade most. Black is a great example of how music is powerful, and how it can provide you a glimpse into someone else’s reality and learn from it.
As we walk through life, we can choose to inform our perception through many different outlets, music is one of those and Dave’s Black is an opportunity to grow and understand a little of another person’s truth. Musically this song delivers, the opening piano is breathtaking, and, in the background, you can hear the familiar rasp of a needle riding vinyl and then he says “Look” and the beat, and the strings carry this song and provide a soaring stage for his lyrics. Black is a beautiful, complete work of music.
Listening, learning and growing…