Memphis musician and educator Matt Blake has released Black Suit and Bones – an album illustrating the sum of his parts. Hailing from Washington, NC, he began cutting his songwriting teeth while performing with various rock bands. After taking an interest in the classical guitar, Matt studied at East Carolina University, and then in Memphis. There, Matt revisited his love for purposeful crafting of words and music as a solo performer. In an interesting twist of styles, Matt worked with famed Memphis songwriter Keith Sykes on a project to arrange and record hard-edged rock band renditions of works by Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven. In almost tongue-in-cheek fashion, Matt also arranged the theme of TV’s The Incredible Hulk for the classical guitar. (Listen to recordings)
While teaching music in Memphis City Schools since 2003, Matt has enjoyed encouraging students to create and express themselves artfully. His program includes guitar classes equipped with sixteen electric guitars, provided by the VH1-Save the Music foundation.
In addition to performing his own music – currently as a three-piece – Matt has also done guitar work for various theatre productions, Opera Memphis, and the Memphis Symphony Orchestra. The constant learner, Matt also explores jazz guitar, and integrates much of what he discovers into his own writing.
Matt’s music is not classical. It is not Memphis music. It is not strictly rock. Not jazz. Rather, the songs all draw on these sounds in a character unique to themselves. Click on the Black Suit and Bones menu and check it out.