Marion Black

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Marion Black is an American soul singer and songwriter from Columbus, Ohio, best known for his 1970 song "Who Knows".


Black’s career began in 1969, when he approached local music operator Bill Moss, with his self-penned song "Who Knows". The resultant single launched Moss's Capsoul record label. The A-side, "Go On Fool," became a minor hit in 1971, peaking at #39 on the US Billboard R&B chart.[1] Black continued his job as a head waiter, and only toured lightly in support of the single. After a dispute over royalties with Capsoul founder Bill Moss, Black left Capsoul for another local label, Prix Records.[2] where he later recorded at Harmonic Sounds.[3] His releases there included "Listen Black Brother", "I'm Gonna Get Loaded", and "(More Love) Is All We Need", but all did not achieve commercial success.

Later in the 1970s, Black recorded at Jack Casey's Rome Studio on East Broad Street, which yielded another nationally distributed single, "Off The Critical List" on Shakat Records.

Three decades later, a tape with a previously unreleased song entitled "Come On and Gettit" was found at an estate sale in Columbus.[4]

Black's recordings have featured on two compilation albums issued by The Numero Group. He is represented on Eccentric Soul: The Capsoul Label (2004) by two tracks, "Who Knows" and "Go On Fool". The compilation Eccentric Soul: The Prix Label (2007) features "Listen Black Brother", along with the unreleased track "Come On and Gettit".

The track "Who Knows" was sampled by the American musician RJD2 in the song "Smoke and Mirrors," from his 2002 album Deadringer.[2] It was also featured on the 2005 soundtrack album Weeds: Music from the Original Series from the first season of Weeds.

In February 2013, "Who Knows" was featured on a TV BlackBerry advertisement shown during the U.S. Super Bowl game.

"Who Knows" was featured in season 2, episode 7 of the Hulu Original series Casual.


Title (A-side/B-side)[5] Label Year
"Go on Fool"/"Who Knows" Capsoul 1970
"I'm Gonna Get Loaded"/"You're Not Alone" Prix 1971
"Listen Black Brother"/"Listen Black Brother - Pt.2" Prix 1972
"(More Love) is All We Need"/Inst. Prix 1973
"Off The Critical List" Part 1/Part 2 Starr/Shakat 1973
"He Kept it For His Self"/"You Don't Want Me" Rome


  1. ^ "Best Selling Soul Singles chart". Billboard Magazine. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. 83 (12): 34. March 20, 1971. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved August 14, 2011.
  2. ^ a b DeVille, Chris: "Headliners: Numero's Eccentric Soul Revue" Columbus Alive! November 5, 2009.
  3. ^ "1972 International Directory of Recording Studios - Columbus (Area Code 614)". Billboard. 84 (24): 45. June 10, 1972. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved August 13, 2011. Harmonic Sounds Studio, Records: "You're not Alone", "Just Another Fool", "Take To The Streets" & "It's Your Brother"; Artist: Marion Black.
  4. ^ "Eccentric Soul: The Prix Label liner notes". Archived from the original on July 15, 2011. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
  5. ^ A list of Marion Black recordings at Retrieved December 27, 2010.

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