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I wish that radio programmers would do a blindfold test when evaluating new songs because Leni Black’s new single “Irrelevant” is far catchier and more meaningful than 98% of what’s on pop radio at the moment.

Leni left a lucrative job in the fashion industry to pursue her musical dreams. That job took her to Beijing and Hong Kong for five years – and her songs have the cosmopolitan appeal of world travelers like Tay-Tay and Maggie Rogers. Black’s studio singing is warm, subtle and relatable, just like those two icons.

With the new single, Leni Black proves that she’s anything but irrelevant – and we can’t wait for her album that’s arriving next year.


What’s the backstory on “Irrelevant”? How did the song take shape?

The inspiration for “Irrelevant” came from a personal experience I had with a friend one night. The lyrics of the song walk through the emotions I felt while reflecting on that experience and the realization that I may have been overthinking the situation. When I initially sat down at the piano to write the song, it was more about processing my emotions than creating a single. Interestingly, I wasn’t initially sold on the song’s hook, as it touched on a common fear many people have while navigating the dating world. But after sharing the demo with some friends following a co-write in Nashville, I was surprised by how relatable the song was to others. This led me to collaborate with producer Jared Anderson, who perfectly captured the essence of the song.

The video for “Irrelevant” was shot at a state fair, right? Was it difficult to get some of the shots due to the milling crowds?

Yes! The Tennessee State Fair. Given the song’s lyrics mentioning roller coasters and elephants (the stuffed elephant I win as representation of the elephant in the room), I felt that a county fair would visually represent the chaotic dating culture today. Shooting on location at the fair definitely had its challenges, particularly due to the crowded environment. It was a sweltering night, with temperatures approaching 100 degrees and the humidity typical of Tennessee summers. Fortunately, I had a supportive team helping me, and my videographer Kimberly had a great vision for certain shots. We did have some onlookers during the shoot, which you might notice in the video.

Who plays the male lead in the video?

The male lead in the video is none other than my best friend’s husband, Trevor Knight. When I asked him to do it he said he had never acted before, but we think he killed it! Trevor is also an artist in his own right and so is his wife, who goes by Wild May – look them up! 

What releases are you planning in 2024?

I’ve been hard at work on new music and have some exciting plans for 2024. I’m preparing to release a couple of new songs early in the year, and I’m also working on completing an album that focuses on my experiences in China.



Story: Larry McClain  //  Photo: Kimberly Nail Creative


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