Black Yaya: Glad Tidings

This Self-Produced Funk-Fuelled Track and Video Are Like Traces of An Eerie Dream

‘There’s a lot of (images of) me dancing,’ said Newly solo musician, Black Yaya (AKA David Ivar) about his latest music video, Glad Tidings.

The video, which he edited himself with the filming help of photographer friend, Frank Fellous, sees duplicated images of a singing and dancing David, dotted about the screen. He thought these visuals would be a perfect compliment to the way his new, eponymous album was recorded in California, with him playing all the instruments.

David is better known as being one half of duo, Herman Dune. We caught up with him to talk about his first solo project since the band separated, as well as the new video and performance.

The Plus: How did going solo affect you music making process?
Black Yaya:
When you’re writing, when you’re recording, it’s a feeling that I appreciate, to not have to think of anyone else when I think of having to play a song. I just think of how I want it to sound; one item can be in this key, and then another in the next key… It’s a good feeling, I feel free.

TP: What is it like Performing Solo as opposed to being one of a duo?
BY: The cool thing about performing solo is that it’s just about the songs. When people like them I know, and when they don’t, or they don’t react, it’s only the songs to blame, and myself, I don’t have to rely on anything else, it’s just me and my songs.

TP: How did you conjure up the idea for this video?
I wanted to sing in it because those are the videos I like, when I see people singing a song. I wore face make up because I wore it on tour sometimes, and in the song, Black Tidings, I mentioned the movie Beetle Juice by Tim Burton, where Micheal Keaton is wearing makeup, and I thought it was cool to have a little reference to the movie.

TP: The inspiration for Glad Tidings came from a dream, where else do you get inspiration?
The times when you remember a dream, and it has a narrative, usually makes a good story.
I get inspiration from everywhere; a dream, something that happens to me, just a feeling, hearing someone says something on the street, a memory from childhood. There are so many things. If it has a story, then I can make a song about it.

See Black Yaya live in Europe, including in London tonight, at Rough Trade East:
04/03 – Rough Trade East (UK), London
12/03 Liège (BE), The Reflektor
20/03 Paris (FR), support Sleater-Kinney at La Cigale
31/03 Angers (FR), Musée des Beaux Arts
03/04 Sables d’Olonnes (FR), Salle Auditorium St Michel
08/04 Bristol (UK), Start The Bus
09/04 London (UK), The Lexington
10/04 Coventry (UK), Tin Music & Arts
11/04 Manchester (UK), Soup Kitchen
12/04 Leeds (UK), Brudenell Social Club
13/04 Glasgow (UK), Mono
15/04 Hull (UK), Adelphi Club
16/04 Lille (FR), Eglise St Catherine
17/04 Paris (FR), Café de la Danse
21/04 Berlin (GER), Bang Bang Club
22/04 München (GER), Kranhalle
23/04 Köln (GER), Luxor
24/04 Freiburg (GER), Passage 46
29/04 Bourges (FR), Salle Auditorium
29/05 Toulouse (FR), Festival Curiosités du Bikini