THE ROLLER COASTER RIDE OF ROCK
Seduce and CRUD’s lead guitarist, David Black, tells all
It was 2000. I just got my dream job as the PR/Promotions Director of a new concert venue.
I reported to a legendary concert promoter by the name of Joe Nieporte. He built his reputation on taking struggling businesses and venues and turning them into gold mines.
His business acumen was strong. He was super connected with national talent and well, he knew how to connect the pieces of the puzzle to make everything come together.
Nieporte was, and still is, a powerhouse.
The new venue took off fast, even faster than Nieporte predicted.
However, every staff meeting, he went back to the lessons he learned about the industry at the infamous Ritz. The Ritz was a concert venue that created some of the most legendary acts back in the 80s, including metal act Seduce.
He talked about how night after the night, the band would sell out the venue. Some of the best professional highs he’d ever experienced happened on Seduce’s rise to fame. Not to mention, Nieporte was a huge fan of the music.
As time went on, no matter what show we did, no matter how successful an event turned out, Nieporte and the team would boldly say, “but it was no Seduce.”
I Had A Bright Idea
After about a year, we worked on plans to keep the events new and enticing. One day, after I’d heard, “but it was no Seduce,” for the hundredth time, I said, “So, why can’t we get them to play here.”
He quickly said, “The band isn’t together, and they don’t all live here.”
I shot back, “Then get them back together, only you know how to do it – even if it’s only for one night.”
Low and behold, he did it.
We created a “Ritz Reunion.”
We brought back some of the owners to work the door. Former employees and fans lined the block. Some fans even cried tears of joy when they walked through the doors because they never thought they’d see Seduce play again.
His Name is Black, David Black
“(Ritz Reunion) might be the most memorable moment of my career,” Seduce lead guitarist David Black recollected. “I didn’t think anyone was going to show up.”
David Black was the name I always heard when they had their fan sessions about Seduce. He was the definition of a legend. He was the guitarist even the major acts couldn’t touch when it came to playing what critics referred to as “Sleaze Metal.”
When bands like Poison, Metallica, and Motley Crüe were making their way off Sunset Strip in LaLa Land, Seduce was selling out to crowds of 2,000 every night in beloved Detroit Rock City.
“I can’t think of a particular moment that I knew Seduce was gaining popularity,” Black said. “But at a certain point, the momentum we built was undeniable.”
It all Started at a Roller Rink on New Year’s Eve
“I was playing in a cover band and when I told people I wanted to do a band that played one set of originals, everyone laughed at me,” Black said. “Funny thing is, a year later I was in Seduce doing exactly that.”
Seduce, a trio comprised of David Black, Mark Andrews, and Chuck Burns, began their career at a roller rink.
“There was a blizzard that night, but it was great,” Black shared. “We opened for Madame X, a female-fronted act that gained huge notoriety during the glam metal days.”
Godfathers of Glam?
As Seduce was on the rise, other male-fronted bands were ratting out their hair, fitting into tight leggings, and breaking out the “manliner.” Some fans have suggested Seduce pioneered this fashion sense.
“I think we were just trying to carry on the original glam thing, but play a different kind of music,” Black recollected. “I grew up listening to Bowie, Bolan and Mott. We didn’t really ‘get ready.’ We kind of looked like some version of that all the time.
“We owned it. We lived it. It wasn’t just an act on stage.”
The Rollercoaster of Rock
Dreams of grandeur consumed the metal trio. They signed to Miles Copeland’s label, IRS Records in California.
Black shared with The Guardian, “We had high hopes, but the band broke up a couple years later. At that time, everyone wanted a big flamboyant singer like (Motley Crüe’s) Vince Neil, to look good on MTV, but being a trio with no obvious front man fucked us. I hated California, but ended up living there for 10 years. I bought a sports car, fell in love, and did a lot of work in the movies: post-production, camera guy, shampoo commercials. Whatever I could get a piece of, but I never gave up playing music.”
Back in Detroit Rock City and playing with CRUD
Eventually, Black made his way back to Detroit. He continues to play reunion shows with Seduce and now is the lead guitarist for Super Fetish rock band, CRUD.
How did Black end up in CRUD?
“Ya know, I’m not even sure,” he said with a laugh. “You’d have to ask Vin (Vinnie Dombroski, lead singer of the band). It was his idea to get me in the band. We’d known each other from back in the day. All I can say is I’m glad he asked, I enjoy it.”
Lessons Black learned along the way:
You must have a great vision for whatever it is you want do in life.
Don’t Suck! Practice your skills.
Get along. Live and let live.
Listen to what everybody has to say. THEN, decide what’s best for you.
As you drive through life, look through the windshield…the rearview mirror is useless.
David Black returns to the stage this Wednesday for Sponge VS Crud Double Header at St. Andrew’s Hall in Detroit. Tickets are still available.