Luvplanet is Mark's heart and soul! His path is driven purely by artistic choices and not current trends etc . Over the years he has earned much respect in the music world as a guitar virtuoso, singer, songwriter and producer. Mark’s intense, in-your-face guitar playing blends his signature shred with thematic, heartfelt melodies. His unique, melodic playing is revered and influential to many players across the globe! With decades of world tours and legendary recordings to his credit, he continues to reveal new layers of his diverse musical soul.
Mark's luv for music started around the age of 7. Early on his parents were playing music in the house such as Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin, movie soundtracks like Paint Your Wagon, Fiddler On The Roof, Singing In The Rain, To Sir With Luv, pop hits on AM radio and also those weekly Sunday church hymns.
Add to that TV shows like American Bandstand, Hee Haw with Roy Clark, Soul Train, The Partridge Family, Lawrence Welk, The Jackson 5, Sonny and Cher and the Osmond's variety shows ensured that Mark's head was filled with a diverse mix of sounds.
Around age 11, after getting exposed to a earful of serious RocknRoll music from the early and mid-seventies, Mark's inspiration took over as he began to fiercely practice the guitar working on his craft and honing his skills. Then one defining day he saw a photo that changed his life, the front cover of Kiss's 1975 album, 'Alive'. From that instant, Mark knew he had to be in a band, get on a stage and Rock an audience!
From 1995 - 2004, and again in 2007, Mark claimed the spot as slide/lead guitarist for Southern Blues Icon ‘Gregg Allman'. With ‘Gregg Allman & Friends’ Mark became the longest running guitarist in Greggs solo career! Together they captivated audiences touring internationally in the US, Europe, Canada, and Japan! Mark's fiery style and wicked slide playing added the potent edge and intensity to the band's sound. Also with GA&F, Mark worked alongside legendary producer Tom Dowd (Clapton, Aretha Franklin) for songs on Gregg's 1997 'Searching for Simplicity' and also appeared on Gregg's 2001 'No Stranger To The Dark/The Best of' cd. They shared the stage with acts such as Jeff Beck, REO Speedwagon, Bad Company, Ted Nugent, The Spinners, Wilson Pickett, David Crosby, Joan Jett, Kansas, Derek Trucks, Govt. Mule and Cyndi Lauper to name a few.
Mark's appeared on the Disney movie soundtrack 'Sky High’, bass legend Stu Hamm's 'Outbound' and 'Just Outside of Normal’ CD's, vocalist Mickey Thomas’s ‘Marauder’, Brad Gillis ‘Alligator’ and the acclaimed instrumental release 'Guitar Farm’ which includes a star studded cast of players such as Steve Morse, Pat Thrall and Dave Menikett!
From 1986-1995, Mark was busy recording and touring the world as lead guitarist/songwriter for heavy metal's ‘Vicious Rumors'. Mark and 'VR' toured in over 20 countries, enjoyed video rotation on MTV's Headbanger's Ball (USA & Europe), and were nominated for 'Outstanding Metal Album' at 1992's Bay Area Music Awards for their Atlantic Records release, 'Welcome to the Ball'. Mark’s contributions to VR's music have made his era with the band the defining period and to this day is held in high regard in the metal community. Together they performed shows around the world to crowds as big as 40,000 people and performed with Paul Stanley (Kiss), Blue Oyster Cult, Paul Dianno (Iron Maiden), Megadeth, Danzig, Zakk Wylde, Badlands, Winger, Megadeth and many others! Some highlights include performing at the famous 'Hammersmith Odeon' and 'Marquee Club' in London, as well as a sold out, headlining tour of Japan!
In 1985 Mark was accepted as a student of legendary voice teacher Judy Davis (Streisand, John Waite, Steve Perry) with whom he studied for 4 years!
Also in 1985-1986 Mark was invited by Bassist and founding member Gary Strater of 70’s Prog Rock legends ‘Starcastle’ to join a new re-vamped version of the band. Starcastle's new music was intense and experimental allowing Mark to expand and tap into a deeper place with his music. In retrospect, this was a cherished time in Mark's musical history!
At age 15, Mark began performing live in the San Francisco Bay Area club scene as lead singer/guitarist for first band 'Overdrive' (1980-1983). Sharing the bill with acts such as Blue Oyster Cult, Metallica, Ratt, Y&T, Randy Hansen, Loudness and Quiet Riot, Overdrive was a powerful start for Mark’s dreams and goals! Mark and Overdrive appear in the 2 part music documentary ‘Bay Area Godfathers’ now available on most streaming services.
In 1984-1985, Mark formed the group 'Now'. Delving into a more progressive rock style, Now provided a natural progression from the straight up hard rock sounds of Overdrive! Although short-lived, the band performed constantly in the top venues throughout the S.F. Bay Area supporting national acts
Contact Mark for Sessions, Guitar Instruction or Production!