Born in 1953 to Anglo-Jewish/Nigerian parents, Pauline Black was subsequently adopted by a white, working class family in Romford. Never quite at home there, she escaped her small town background and discovered a different way of life – making music.
Lead singer for platinum-selling band The Selecter, Pauline Black was the Queen of British Ska. The only woman in a movement dominated by men, she toured with The Specials, Madness, Dexy’s Midnight Runners when they were at the top of the charts – and, sometimes, on their worst behaviour.
From childhood to fame, from singing to acting and broadcasting, from adoption to her recent search for her birth parents, Black By Design is a funny and enlightening story of music, race, family and roots.