Today we are sitting down for an interview with veteran musician and legendary songwriter Paul Mark to find out a little more about him and what is going on in his world.
In what city, state and country do you reside?
New York NY
How long have you been making music, and what is your favorite part of it?
30+ years. The two years I drove a NYC taxi don’t count.
In what genre or style would you classify your music?
Paul Mark music. Er, Contemporary Paul Mark music. Imagine Howlin Wolf providing the soundtrack to a 50s bank heist B movie.
Who are your top 5 musical influences? Also, please tell us who inspires you?
Toshiro Mifune, Charlie Patton, Lightning Hopkins, Gregory Peck in Moby Dick. The fifth one I forgot…Like most of my influences.
What do you want your fans to take from your music after they leave the venue where you have just performed?
Whatever it was they thought they buying when they were ding’ed at the door. And the promise of a buzzing ears and a headache the next morning. And maybe the memory of one or two lines from the songs.
What is the best concert you have been to? What do you like most about playing live?
Either 1) Ennio Morricone and his Rome orchestra at Radio City, or 2) Otis Rush at Tramps, or 3) Albert Collins at the Lone Star Café.
Is there a song on your latest CD release here that stands out as your personal favorite, and why?
Maybe Gravity is Failing, ‘cuz it brought great relief when it was finished. Very elaborate mix, that one.
How have you evolved as an artist over the last year?
I’m poorer. But that been historically true every year.
If you could meet, play a gig with, co-write a song with, have dinner with or have a drink with any band or artist (dead or alive) who would it be?
How many songs /albums have you released to date? Would you mind telling us a little bit about them?
11 albums. See https://music.paulmark.com/ . Lotsa info about each album there.
Can you tell us about your latest release and the background/inspirations behind it?
Inspirations include my 5am dreams, James Booker records and the New York Times, every day.
What is your dream gig?
Good sound system, very loose audience, sober bandmates.
If you had to, where would you place yourself in the “Sounds Like” category?
Paul Mark & The Van Dorens sound like “A cockeyed circus band parading into the next town after being tossed out of the last one for failure to satisfy its creditors.”
How have you ended up in the music industry? What would you be doing if you were not a musician?
Selling shoes. I always like the idea of selling shoes.
How do you and your musical style differ from other artists?
Actually, I think we’re all pretty much alike. But we just all sound different.
What other hobbies or interests do you have?
19th century novels, and walking my dog. Oh, and I eat lunch at diners. A lot.
Tell us more about your upcoming project or this new project?
Gravity took 2+ years to create. I hope folks don’t hold it against me.
Can you tell us the music distribution portals where your music is available?
BandCamp, Spotify, ITunes, YouTube. The usual suspects. Yeah, you can find it on Amazon too. But I hate Amazon, so I don’t push it too hard.
Can you have increasing commercial success and retain your artistic integrity?
I’ve never tried.
I assume you use Spotify to promote your music. How are you doing there and how can fans find you on Spotify?
What is in the pipeline after this project?
Sorting out options right now…This year’s pandemic and economic crises have necessitated a re-think of directions. I can’t even figure out when to go buy groceries. Agonizing reappraisals. I’m thinking about doing some in-studio, live-to-vid performances. And practicing the piano and guitar, as always.
Thank you for your time and may you continue making great music.
Hey, thanks to all those folks who’ve listened (and liked?) Paul Mark music. Much gratitude. And to those who listened to my music and didn’t know what the F was going on, I thank you too.
End of Interview