The Black Album

Note: All information contained about the black album is based on interviews the band has done and conversations I've had with people very close to the recording process of the album, but nothing is directly from any of the band members. Because of this, some information on this page is opinion (though based on real sources) and could be wrong.

Since the formation of The dandy Warhols in 1994, countless stories have surfaced on every aspect of their career, both professionally and personally. From numerous orgies around the world to sampling any and all forms of "recreation" to wowing people of all musical distinction globally. But, through the drugs, the nudity and the cavorting with the famous of the world, no story has been more widely circulated than that of The Black Album.

Following relatively major success with their first album, Dandys Rule, OK, on local Portland label Tim/Kerr Records, every major label came courting, with Capitol Records eventually signing the band to a record contract. Finally in 1996, the band went into Stiles Recording, in Portland, Oregon, and began work on their "major label debut." Unfortunately, the band also brought along few solid ideas of what they wanted to have the album and lots of drugs. Eventually, the band took the rough versions of the tracks and gave them to Capitol Records, and that is when things got interesting.

There has always been contradicting reports as to who made the choice: Did Capitol decide they were not releasable or did the band decide this? The final answer to this confusion appeared to be that the band made the decision, but the blame fell on Capitol (though, even years later, this has never conclusively been answered either way). Regardless, this album was never finished or released and the band started to refer to it as The Black Album. Since then, though some of the tracks have stared to appear as b-sides on some singles and some we're reworked for inclusion on what would end up being their Capitol debut album, "...The Dandy Warhols come Down."

Since the album was never finished, there was never any official track listing for the album beyond one made by Clark Stiles, who co-produced, mixed and engineered the album. This was made because Courtney wanted a copy and these were just the order that Stiles put them in:

  1. Arpeggio Adaggio
  2. CCR (later known by its full name of Crack Cocaine Rager)
  3. Good Morning (alternate/original version)
  4. Head (alternate mix)
  5. White Gold
  6. Boys (alternate version. Later known as Boys Better)
  7. Traci Lords
  8. You Get Hi
  9. Shinny Leather Boots
  10. Alien
  11. E Jams (instrumental - parts of Pete International Airport and Be-In in it)
  12. Part 1 (instrumental - might be Be-In)
  13. Minasoter (alternate version. Later known as Minnasoter)
  14. Twist
  15. The Wreck (alternate, 9 minute version. Later known as Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald)

Some further information:
In the track "Alien", the female lead singer is a woman named DeeDee, and not Zia McCabe, as often assumed.
There are at least 3 versions of The Black Album floating around, with the differences being based on what order the tracks appear in. On most bootlegged copies of the album, "Alien" comes before "Shinny Leather Boots." Also, "E Jams" and "Part 1" are combined.
I currently have no real final answer as to if "E Jams" and/or "Part 1" contain parts of what would end up becoming "Be-In" and "Pete International Airport," due to the fact that I just haven't taken the time to listen to them and compare.
The track "One," was not part of the Clark Stiles sessions of recording for The Black Album, unlike widely assumed.

For years, The Black Album held a taboo spot in Dandy Warhols lore, with the band requesting it not get circulated, making it very sought after by fans. In recent times, though, the band has expressed that basically they don't mind if it is shared among fans, as long as it isn't sold. Not being released commercially ever, the distribution has occurred along the same lines as bootlegged concert recordings, making it at times hard to find. The best way to find copies are through newsgroups, mailing lists and other on-line sources that reach large groups of fans. will never offer the tracks for sale, trade or download.