Black Magic

(Horace Jr. Turner) was born in Eufaula Alabama and is the grandson of cotton and bean sharecroppers and the son of a steelworker. His family eventually migrated north to Baltimore in search of work, and has made Maryland their home for a number of years. Magic showed an early distaste for picking cotton and a strong interest in music and dance, which ranged from hand-dancing contests, jams at house parties, “street corner symphonies” (a capella neighborhood challenges), and songwriting, which he started at 11 years old. In junior high school, he took up percussion resulting in close to 20 years of conga playing. Magic’s family took in a border…a harp player from North Carolina who gave Magic his first lessons and changed his life.

From practice sessions with Motown records, TV commercials, and instructional books on playing harmonica, Magic’s inevitable career took root as Magic started with singing groups such as the Quick Setters, The Circulations, and The Civics to make his first recordings at 16 years old. In the 1960’s, his music became primarily blues-based rock, strongly influenced by the Rolling stones and Eric Clapton. He formed a blues band, Rated X, that played in Baltimore and toured Philadelphia, New Jersey, and boston. The contacts he made extended him to parties in Chicago and LA. In the late 60’s, upon inspiration from Magic Dick of the J Geils Band, he adopted the name “Black Magic”. In the 70’s, Magic formed a new blues band, The Heat, which played primarily in Baltimore clubs. In 1998, black Magic recorded a CD “Bad Case of the Blues” with a guitarist/vocalist from Spain, which highlighted Magic’s harmonica talent and vocal styles, which have been strongly influenced by Jimmy Reed, Muddy Waters, Junior Wells and Little Walter.

Magic joined up with The Westcott Brothers Band in May of 2001, and continues to perform as the vocalist/harp player and “frontman” for the group.