Gorilla on Tour – Performer Profiles : Jack of Diamonds

As leader of The Black Diamond Express, the enigmatic Jack of Diamonds has introduced their sepia toned, bourbon soaked songs to audiences far and wide. Despite a clear roots influence The Black Diamond Express somehow stay true to both Robert Johnson and the Sex Pistols, and Jack of Diamonds is the key to their rambunctious, foot stomping sound.

His songs speak of underground speakeasies, wandering bards and hidden railways – with a hefty dose of old fashioned rock and roll and mythic poetry, guaranteed to scuff the floors and raise the roof.

“Matthew, 7th chapter and 13th verse:
‘Enter ye in at the straight gate for wide is the gate
and broad is the path that leadeth to destruction’
and many be here that go in there.
This train is known as The Black Diamond Express Train to Hell.
Sin is the engineer. Pleasure is the headlight,
and the Devil is the conductor.
I see the Black Diamond as she starts off for Hell now.
The bell is ringing. Hell-bound! Hell-bound!
The Devil cries out “All aboard for Hell!”
First station! Is Drunkards-ville. Stop there
and let all the drunkards get on board.
We have a big crowd down there drinking.
Some drinkin’ jump-steady, some drinking shinny,
some drinking moonshine, some drinking white mule and red horse.
All of you drunkards you got to go to Hell on the Black Diamond train.
The Black Diamond starts off for Hell now.
Next station! Is Liars Avenue.Wait there!
And let all the liars get on board.
We have a big crowd of liars down there,
have some smooth liars,
some unreasonable liars,
some professional liars,
some bare-faced liars,
some ungodly liars,
some big liars,
some little liars,
some go to bed lying,
get up lying.
Lie all day!
They lie on you and they lie on me!
A big crowd of liars! You got to go to Hell
on the Black Diamond train. Next station!
Is Deceivers-ville. Wait there!
And let all the deceivers get on board.
Some of you been deceiving ’em ever since you’ve been in the world,
friend deceiving friend, husbands deceiving wives, wives deceiving husbands.
You got to go to Hell on the Black Diamond train.
Next station! Is Confusion Junction. Wait there!
And let all the confusion-makers get on board.
Some of you raise confusion in your home,
confusion in the street, confusion everywhere you go.
But you got to go to hell on the Black Diamond train…
…And now the Black Diamond will stop for just a minute
to take on brimstone for Hell.”

Rev. A.W. Nix (c.1927)

Jack of Diamonds will appear in Glasgow at Mono on October 9, and in Edinburgh at Inspace on October 11.

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