His musical journey bagan at the age of 12 in fayetteville, north carolina where he attended a johnny winter/foghat concert. He then became a student of the blues, fascinated with the influence of blues in modern music. During his high school years in pennsylvania he began studying the guitar and performed with regional bands. In 1978 he attended grahm college in boston for audio engineering picking up musical chops from his roomates that were attending the berklee college of music. After boston neal black headed to san antonio, texas and studied for 2 years at the southwest guitar conservatory, there he was influenced and taught a jazz-classical approach to the guitar by such legends as jackie king, lenny breau, herb ellis and barney kessell.
At the same time he also formed the san antonio based blues band, "dogman & the shepherds" with rene lopez on drums and gary walden on bass. The group achieved national recognition through numerous releases on small texas labels, touring nationally with major radio airplay on blues stations.
After 10 years in texas neal black moved to new york city with his musical partner pedal steel guitar wizard gib wharton and it was there that they both achieved international recognition.
In 1992 after touring europe as a backing guitarist for such legends as the chambers brothers, jimmy dawkins and johnnie johnson, neal black & the healers signed to dixie frog/msi records. His self titled 1st release reached the top 50 in france. This was followed by a us release on flying fish/deluge records. In 1994 his 2nd release "black power" featured such guest artists as john sebastian, johnnie johnson, jimmy vivino and others. Br>after touring europe extensively performing at such major festivals as nottodden blues/norway, montreaux jazz/switzerland, woodstock 20th anniversary/new york, montreal jazz festival/canada, neal black decided to head back to texas to recharge his musical battery in a place where he would be close to his creative roots.
There he recorded an experimental acoustic album (that is available exclusively through blue cobra music). In 1999 he went back into the studio to record "gone back to texas" the most current release available on dixie frog records and was also featured on the polygram compilation - "blues story" alongside such legendary blues artists as muddy waters, bo diddley, chuck berry, ian moore, etc.
He also received the pinnacle of critical acclaim in the united states with 4 star reviews on 2 of his albums in the "rolling stone jazz and blues buying guide".
Other major credits include publishing contracts with warner chappell music, hammstein music,television and radio commercials with shinerbock beer, espn television, b.e.t. television and an artist endorsement deal with gibson guitars. Neal black performance credits are monumental to say the least. They include co billing/support act for artists such as albert king, stevie ray vaughan, leon russell, stephen stills, and many others...(see performance credits).
Neal black currently performs throughout texas and is working on his 4th album for dixie frog records.