She’s already collaborated and written songs with the Black Eyed Peas, Kelis, the Noisettes and Moby, as well as fronting her own cult-fave Brooklyn band, KUDU. So you would think Sylvia Gordon’s multitasking skills might be worn down to the white meat by now.

But the bass-playing maestra has yet another trick up her sleeve: her musical alter-ego, Betty Black. Gordon was born in tiny Opelika, Alabama, and raised in several towns along the west coast and southwest, but calls New York City her longtime home. She’s best known as the frontwoman for KUDU (a.k.a. the coolest indie jazz-soul-tronica band you’ve probably never heard of).


Sylvia’s work with other hitmakers eventually led to her striking out on her own—with production assistance from guitarist/engineer Rudyard Lee Cullers—as the vivacious Miss Black, for her forthcoming album, Valley Low. Her self-directed video for the first single, “Come Back Lover,” is as come-hither as the title suggests, with the tatted-up, self-described “Southern Gothic Chanteuse” imploring her paramour to give her that old thang back.

Her sultry moves and four-string bass are her weapons of mass seduction, unleashed beneath the starry sky of a dusk-fallen California desert. For all lovers of ominously sexy rock ’n’ roll, resistance is futile. Take the desert road less traveled and press play on this one.—Sun Singleton

Hip yourself to Betty Black’s new music on SoundcloudBandcamp and her website.