Few people have contributed to or intersected with the New Zealand music industry in as many ways as Malcolm Black. It is with great sadness that we hear of his death in Auckland on Friday, May 10. He was 58.
Malcolm had been suffering from terminal bowel cancer for many months. His fighting spirit was illustrated with a feature appearance at the 2018 Silver Scroll Awards, and one final stage performance at Dunedin’s Captain Cook venue in late March. All proceeds of that show went to cancer research at the University of Otago.
Rising to local fame as the frontman for The Netherworld Dancing Toys in the 1980s, Malcolm achieved highly in many roles, as a musician, entertainment lawyer, music and licensing supervisor, artist manager and APRA artist representative.
From 1992 onwards he generously contributed a series of ‘The Musician and the Law’ articles to NZ Musician magazine, stating that his aim with the column was ‘…to heighten Kiwi musicians’ awareness of how the music industry works, i.e. “the rules of the game”, with a view to maximising the monetary rewards they receive.’
Malcolm Black leaves a considerable legacy of fine work on behalf of many, including a 2019 farewell album entitled ‘Songs For My Family’.
Malcolm’s funeral will be on May 13, 2pm at Holy Trinity in Parnell.