Kelly Hall had a high school teacher who gave students some simple, but profound,
advice: Have something to say; say it. Mark believes he does have
something to say, and has found that a song is a powerful way to say itand a lot of
fun to create and present.
KEEP IT REAL, KEEP IT SHORT, AND KEEP YOUR PUBLISHING
As a singer/songwriter, Marks goal is to reveal the hope, humor, and meaning to be
discovered in even the "commonest" of life experiences. His favorite
quotations include God is in the details and Be faithful in the small
things (another favorite is Better late than neverbut let's not
talk about work habits here). He believes the best approach to songwriting is to
apply imagination and solid truth to real life, to be honest and vulnerable while avoiding
emotional exhibitionism, and to master songcrafting principles without being a slave to
conventional expectations. He also favors a nice calypso rhythm, when he can get
away with it. The resulting performances are a unique combination of entertainment,
artistic endeavor, and affordable therapy.
NUTS & BOLTS
Mark generally does a solo acoustic performance, singing and playing guitar, often mixing
in a few 60's & 70's covers with his originals. His style might be described as folk/pop
with a touch of country bluesthink "Jim Croce, with an edge," or
Dan Fogelberg, with fewer codependency issues. The mood of his
presentation ranges from congenial (with humor that is usually intentional) to
reflective, with occasional bursts of intensity.
Mark was born in Chattanooga and brought up in nearby Cleveland, Tennessee. He
attended Bradley Central High School, and now enjoys serving as webmaster for his class reunion website, partly
because it has helped him feel he's contributing to his fellow alumni, but mostly because
the term "webmaster" implies a certain aura of wisdom and power. He
graduated from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville in 1987 with a B.S. degree in
Communications. His education is ongoing, though informal; he says since
broadcasting was my major, I consider watching TV post-graduate
BEEN THERE, DONE THAT
Since his high school years, Mark has done volunteer and professional church work,
part-time and full-time, and has taken his music with him. His travels have put him in
front of a wide range of audiences, in the Northwest, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, San Francisco,
Harlem, Las Vegas (it wasnt exactly the Sands Hotel), and Minsk, Belarus.
ON THE HOME FRONT
Mark has performed in a variety of settings, from coffeehouses to clubs to church group
retreats, including some of the top venues in Chattanooga. Among these, his
favorite experiences include repeated appearances at the Riverbend Festival, the Fall Color Cruise
Festival and the KUDZU Festival. He was nominated for the 2000 Acoustic
Songwriter of the Year award by Chattanooga Independent Artists.
WHY DID GINGER PACK
SO MUCH FOR A THREE-HOUR TOUR?
Marks songs are flavored by a variety of influences, including a lifelong
fascination with American pop culture. As a Bible-belt Southerner, Mark is also
attentive to the spiritual undercurrent of everyday life. Some of his songs address
these issues directly, but his ideal is to present an image or tell a story and let the
truth speak for itself.
Mark continues to develop his songwriting craft, learning what he can and sharing with
other writers what he has learned. Through the years he has enjoyed the education he has
received and the friends he has made attending songwriting seminars such as those offered
by the Nashville
Songwriters Association International and the Gospel Music Association. His further involvement with NSAI
includes stints as coordinator of the NSAI workshop in Chattanooga and as a full-time
staff member after moving to Nashville. He continues to enjoy meeting other people who
believe "it all begins with a song," and has been thrilled to take opportunities
to share what he has learned by helping lead seminars
in South Africa. He also enjoys writers' nights, which can be as instructive as
they are affordable.
ARE WE THERE YET?
As he looks to his future, Mark says My goal is to make the most of the gifts I've
been given, writing and performing whenever and wherever I can, as well as having my songs
recorded by other artists. I hope to reach as wide an audience as possible, and
still offer something of substance and significance for each listener.
here for a list of performances past.