Jack White and his ace band delivered a scorching take on “That Black Bat Licorice” during Thursday’s Tonight Show, helping Jimmy Fallon and company bring their week of Los Angeles tapings to a thunderous close.
After an awkward introduction from Fallon – in which he fumbles with a vinyl copy of White’s 2014 LP, Lazaretto – White and his six-piece crew rip into the heavy riff-rocker. White, dressed like a suave modern Elvis, tosses off lava-fuzz guitar lines and borderline-rapped vocals between violin solos and funky drum fills.
White has been in a collaborative concert mood as of late. At an epic Nashville homecoming show in late January, the guitarist reunited with his Raconteurs bandmates for two songs, and he brought out country legend Loretta Lynn – whose 2004 LP, Van Lear Rose, White produced – for an encore duet of that album’s “Portland, Oregon.” Two nights later, during a sold-out gig at New York City’s Madison Square Garden, White brought out legendary rapper Q-Tip for a guest spot on “That Black Bat Licorice.” The band then seamlessly flowed into a rock-heavy take on “Excursions,” the opening cut from A Tribe Called Quest’s landmark 1991 LP, The Low End Theory.
White is nominated for three Grammys – Best Rock Song and Best Rock Performance for “Lazaretto,” Best Alternative Music Album for Lazaretto – at this year’s ceremony, which airs Sunday, February 8th on CBS. This April, the frontman (along with AC/DC and Drake) will headline one night of the sprawling Coachella fest.