Black Horse and the Cherry Tree

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"Black Horse and the Cherry Tree"
Single by KT Tunstall
from the album Eye to the Telescope
B-side"Barbie"
"One Day"
Released21 February 2005 (2005-02-21)
(See release history)
Format7", CD
Recorded2004
GenreIndie rock, alternative rock, folk pop, folk blues
Length2:51
LabelRelentless Records
Writer(s)KT Tunstall
Producer(s)Andy Green
KT Tunstall UK singles chronology
"Throw Me a Rope"
(2004)
"Black Horse and the Cherry Tree"
(2005)
"Other Side of the World"
(2005)
KT Tunstall US singles chronology
"Black Horse and the Cherry Tree"
(2005)
"Suddenly I See"
(2006)
Music sample
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"Black Horse and the Cherry Tree"
Single by KT Tunstall
from the album Eye to the Telescope
B-side"Barbie"
"One Day"
Released21 February 2005 (2005-02-21)
(See release history)
Format7", CD
Recorded2004
GenreIndie rock, alternative rock, folk pop, folk blues
Length2:51
LabelRelentless Records
Writer(s)KT Tunstall
Producer(s)Andy Green
KT Tunstall UK singles chronology
"Throw Me a Rope"
(2004)
"Black Horse and the Cherry Tree"
(2005)
"Other Side of the World"
(2005)
KT Tunstall US singles chronology
"Black Horse and the Cherry Tree"
(2005)
"Suddenly I See"
(2006)
Music sample
Sorry, your browser either has JavaScript disabled or does not have any supported player.
You can download the clip or download a player to play the clip in your browser.

"Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" (commonly written with an ampersand) is a song by British singer-songwriter KT Tunstall and is featured on her debut album, Eye to the Telescope. It was released on 21 February 2005 as the lead single from the album, charting at No. 28 in the UK Singles Chart (see 2005 in British music). It is one of many songs that reuses the famous Bo Diddley beat from the influential 1955 song of the same name.

The song is a playable track in the music video games Band Hero and Dancing with the Stars: We Dance!

Song information[edit]

Tunstall said of the song:[1]

"Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" is inspired by old blues, Nashville psycho hillbillies & hazy memories. It tells the story of finding yourself lost on your path, and a choice has to be made. It's about gambling, fate, listening to your heart, and having the strength to fight the darkness that's always willing to carry you off.

The song is usually performed solo by Tunstall, the original artist, with the layered guitar and vocals constructed piece-by-piece by sampling the parts live, and using a loop pedal unit to create the backing track. A performance of the song on Later... with Jools Holland (recorded before the release of Eye to the Telescope) was an important break in Tunstall's career. The song won Tunstall an award for Best Single of 2005 in Q, and it received a 2007 Grammy Award nomination for "Best Female Pop Vocal Performance".[2]

The album version was used as the opening theme song for the CBC Television drama Wild Roses. The song was later redone by Aly & AJ for Pepsi Smash, included on the Japanese only re-release of their second studio album Insomniatic. "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" was also used in advertisements for The WB show Pepper Dennis and the 2006 US Open. The song's video ranked No. 19 on VH1's 40 Greatest Videos of 2006. During the programme's airing, Tunstall stated that the day of the video shoot was the only time she had ever worn red lipstick.

Track listings[edit]

  1. "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" – 2:54
  1. "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" – 2:54
  2. "One Day (Live)" – 4:19
  3. "Barbie" – 2:23
  4. "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" (Instrumental) – 2:54
  1. "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" – 2:54
  2. "Barbie" – 2:25
  1. "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" – 2:54
  2. "One Day (Live)" – 4:19
  1. "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" – 2:51
  2. "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" (Instrumental) – 2:47
  1. "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" – 2:54

Release history[edit]

CountryRelease date
United Kingdom21 February 2005 (2005-02-21)
Canada29 August 2005 (2005-08-29)
United States

Chart performance[edit]

In the United Kingdom, the single peaked at No. 28 in its first week and dropped out of the Top 75 in three weeks.

In the United States, "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" was initially in the bottom half of the US Billboard Hot 100 chart. Only after Katharine McPhee sang the song on American Idol (in the 5th season) as part of a Billboard charts-based song selection did the tune rise rapidly in popularity; it jumped 56 positions on the U.S. Hot 100 chart, going from No. 79 to No. 23, and then moving to No. 20, becoming Tunstall's first single (and only, to date) to appear on that chart's Top 20. McPhee would go on to sing the song again in her final performance show on 23 May 2006, finishing second to Taylor Hicks.

Megan Joy also sang this song on American Idol in Season 8.

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (2005–07)Peak
position[3]
Austrian Singles Chart31
Belgian Singles Chart35
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)51
Dutch Singles Chart80
French Singles Chart23
German Singles Chart51
Irish Singles Chart16
Italian Singles Chart10
New Zealand Singles Charts20
Spain Los 40 Principales21
Swiss Singles Chart92
UK Singles Chart28
US Billboard Hot 10020
US Billboard Pop Songs15
US Billboard Adult Pop Songs1
US Billboard Adult Contemporary4

Cover versions[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "KT Tunstall – Black Horse and the Cherry Tree, Video". Contactmusic.com. Retrieved 4 April 2009. 
  2. ^ "FOX Facts: Complete List of Grammy Award Nominations". Associated Press. 7 December 2006. Retrieved 9 December 2006. 
  3. ^ References for chart positions: