Black Pearl was composed of Bernie "B.B" Fieldings (vocals), Bruce Benson (guitar), Oak O'Connor (drums), Geoffrey Morris (guitar), Tom Mulcahy (guitar) and Jerry Causi (bass). Morris, Causi and Benson had been members of the Barbarians, a 60s garage band noted for their extreme long hair for the times and their single, " Are You a Boy or Are You A Girl". The Barbarians were also noted for the band's drummer, Moulty, who had lost one hand in a childhood accident and consequently played drums with a hook.
The band was formed after Barbarians' singer and drummer Moulty refused to travel to Boulder, Colorado for a two week engagement. A new drummer, Oak O'Connor, plus Mulcahy and Fieldings, joined with ex-Barbarians Morris, Causi and Benson, all initially based in Boston, to form Black Pearl in 1967. The band relocated from Boston to San Francisco, after a period of time in Colorado.
Fieldings, who was white, was a wild showman who modeled his stage presence on that of James Brown. His admiration for James Brown was evident on the group's live album, which contains a twelve minute version of James Brown's "Cold Sweat". As noted by one reviewer, "Black Pearl crank out some hard rockin' psych-rock music with the most ferocious drumbeats you've heard in a while." The band's three guitar lineup was considered to be both unique and powerful, being a format also found in contemporaries Moby Grape and Buffalo Springfield.
Black Pearl released two albums, Black Pearl (1969) and Black Pearl - Live! (1970), with the second being less well-received than the first.close