Mark is a versatile guitar player, singer and composer from Boston. He tours regularly with Bluegrass and Old-Time acts Hoot and Holler, The Moonlight Ramblers, and as a solo artist. He plays blues-rock, jazz, and country music with The Country Shuffle. He writes songs about real life and imagination, and composes music for horns, strings, and anything else.
Originally a Jersey boy, he picked up the guitar at age 13 to play angsty heavy metal, but quickly discovered a passion for classic rock and blues. Mark set out to learn his craft by taking lessons at the local music shop, learning his favorite songs by ear at home, and playing in rock bands with his high school friends.
Mark’s constant hunger for new music led him to study Jazz guitar. He played in the Nutley High School Big Band and small group Jazz Lab class, and began taking lessons with Modern Jazz guitar master Vic Juris. Each Saturday, Mark attended New Jersey Performing Arts Center’s Jazz For Teens Program, studying Jazz Guitar, Theory, Composition, and Small Group Playing under the likes of Juris Tepe, Marc Gross, and Ron Jackson. All the while, Mark continued to write and perform Rock music with local bands, making it to legendary Jersey venues like The Stone Pony and Starland Ballroom.
After high school, Mark headed up to Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA to study Jazz. By day he earned a degree in Jazz Composition, studying under Greg Hopkins, Bob Pilkington, and Ken Pullig. But in the nighttime, Mark picked up his acoustic and dove into the wild world of Trad/Folk music that thrives in Boston, learning all about Bluegrass, Celtic, Cajun, Quebecois, and other fiddle-based styles at jams and tuneswaps across the city.
Straight out of Berklee, Mark dedicated himself to performing, writing, recording, and handling business in Alt-Bluegrass band, The Whiskey Boys. Mark and his co-captain, fiddler David Delaney, released two CDs: Mary Come To Boston, and Crescent Moon, featuring Mark’s singing, guitar playing, song and tune writing, arranging, and production skills. The Whiskey Boys created a self-sustaining business model, touring all over the Northeast, playing venues like Portland’s Blue, Radio Bean, The Firebox, New England Americana Festival, The Putney School, Indie Music Night, Rodeo Bar, Brooklyn Country Fest, North Branch Bluegrass Festival, Milkboy Café, and several house concerts. In early 2012, Mark brushed off his Jazz Composition skills to write music for a staged reading of Emily Rudofsky’s Shira Sings The Blues at the Boston University STAMP Festival.
After leaving the Whiskey boys, Mark went on a two month soul journey through Louisiana and Texas. Upon his return he crafted his first solo effort, I Will Find My Lover By and By, and now performs with old-time/folk duo Hoot and Holler, modern bluegrass outfit, The Moonlight Ramblers, power trio The Country Shuffle, and as a freelance guitar, bass, and banjo player.