Mark Blacknell Band
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Mark Blacknell Band

Vero Beach, Florida, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | INDIE

Vero Beach, Florida, United States | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Rock Singer/Songwriter


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"5. Mark Blacknell"

Mark Blacknell stuurde ons Come On en beschreef het als een mix tussen Jethro Tull en Led Zeppelin. Dat vonden we dermate interessant dat we het liedje aanslingerden. En Mark heeft niets teveel gezegd. Rock on! En doet dat hij zeker, hij zit namelijk as we speak in de studio voor het opnemen van een nieuwe plaat. Dat doet hij met Adam Kasper, die eerder werkte met Pearl Jam, Eddie Vedder en Nirvana. - Gobsmag (Hype Machine)

"Come One by Mark Blacknell"

Come One, a song by Mark Blacknell on Hype Machine. - Hype Machine

"Disabled Vet Finds Hope in Nature and Music"

Lance Corporal Mark Blacknell was not unlike other infantry Marines that put their lives on the line for their country.

“I was on a helicopter op with the Seals back in 1992 when my harness broke causing my backup rope to pull tight around my chest. There I was hanging from two thousand feet, in excruciating pain, struggling for air and thinking that my life was over. Then I passed out.”

Not long after surviving the accident, Blacknell’s enlistment was up and he found himself struggling to transition back to civilian life.

“One day I’m hanging from a chopper nearly dead and the next I’m in college hanging out with all the other freshman at the student union. Like so many other vets, I turned to alcohol to cope with not fitting in but thank goodness, I also turned to nature and music.”

After earning a master’s degree from Widener University, Blacknell went into the nature conservation profession, serving as a Pennsylvania state park ranger, environmental policymaker for former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell and Producer/Director of the award winning documentary movie “Woke Up Alive” that explores how nature and music bring people together in Israel. He also worked at Haleakala National Park on the Island of Maui, Hawaii for five years and currently serves as an administrator with the US Fish and Wildlife Service in Vero Beach.

Inspired by his remarkable journey, Blacknell continues to write and perform his own original material.

“Over the last twenty years, I have personally experienced the awesome power of music and nature. I no longer view music as entertainment or nature as a resource to be exploited. Music and nature are universal and they inspire and even empower people all over the world. This is why I will never give up on either my music or my planet.”

Blacknell’s commitment to songwriting has finally paid off, recently signing a new deal with Sugo Music Group of San Francisco, a trusted name in the industry for over thirty years.

“In many ways the music business is as tough as the military. You have to be courageous and confident but then again, you can’t get cocky because your ego is often your worst enemy. I am by no means a rock star but you know that you’ve survived in this industry, when you have a team of professionals focused on making you money, instead of taking your money.”

A bevy of life experiences best define the bold story-telling in Blacknell’s new, thirteen song album “When Rain Was Fun” available November 25th through Itunes and other internet outlets.

“The title of this second album represents how I think today. One day during a sun shower, I took my four year old daughter out to play in the rain. While wearing one of those cute, plastic rain outfits with matching boots and umbrella she looked at me and said, Isn’t rain fun daddy? Almost on cue, a magnificent rainbow filled the sky. Typically as we grow older, rain becomes an afterthought (even a nuisance) but really my daughter has it right, rain is not only fun and critical to life but beautiful if you really pay attention to it. The same can be said for music.”

Blacknell is in the process of recording his third album at the world-class studios of Full Sail University in Winter Park. His band is made up of talented, industry pros including former “Firefall” member and Florida rock legend Bob Gaffney on guitar; Bass player Steve Saunders, former member of Cleveland’s iconic band “Fayrewether,” as well as “Smoking Man” one of Florida’s most popular cover-bands; On drums is Steven Kleisath, best known for his work with national acts like “Further Seems Forever”; and keyboardist Matt Roberts who is a successful Treasure Coast area solo performer in his own right. Blacknell and band will be performing live at select venues across the region starting in early 2015.

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"Mark Blacknell"

Mark Blacknell is unafraid. I love his cool confidence. He’s led quite an interesting life. In addition to playing music, Mark was a bookie, a Marine, a park ranger and a documentary filmmaker. Mark admits, “It was a struggle to figure out what I actually wanted to do. I wanted to do everything. Sooner or later, you have to choose what you are going to master. For me, it was music, specifically lyrics and songwriting.”
We selected Mark Blacknell as winner of our ReverbNation contest because of his unique sound. When I listen, I hear a rock ballad mixed with a little country and a splash of Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan. To Mark, “My music is George Harrison meets Lou Reed in a dark alley. To me, it’s a diary of my life. Each song represents a different experience that I learned from: sometimes, the hard way; sometimes, the good way.”
Mark Blacknell credits Woodstock and the counter-culture of the 60’s with influencing his sound: Janis Joplin; Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young; and Johnny Winter, who just passed away. “Growing up, my father idolized Woodstock, and he had the album. He made it sort of mythical for me. I used to be able to name everybody at Woodstock. I also spent far too many hours as a child listening to The Beatles on my little green and white turntable.”
Mark Blacknell is prepping for his When Rain Was Fun album release. The pre-release playlist has 13 tracks, so it’s quite a project. As Mark explains, “It was written when I was living at the 4,000 foot level of Haleakala (in upper Kula on Maui). There was natural beauty everywhere; it was very inspirational. Most of the songs came out of that period.”
Mark Blacknell singingMark is just starting to learn how to best use social media. “After you learn those lessons, you can announce a show by writing one sentence in one place and it goes everywhere, without you having to go to each and every site. I’m just learning technology, as far as the music business is concerned. I wish that I didn’t wait so long.”
We also selected Mark Blacknell because he showed that he has excellent business acumen. Instead of spamming me with links to his music, he sent me a nice letter, offering to help with the selection process. Mark advises, “You want to try and write something to distinguish yourself and let the person know that you’re low maintenance.”
Mark also advises other musicians, “If you’re younger, the first thing you want to do is work on yourself, become a better human being. Then you’ll become a better musician and you’ll have a better life, regardless of whether or not you make it. If you’re someone who has invested a lot into it, like I have, try to maintain the same attitude as when you were younger. It’s a bit more difficult, because you have more things going on in your life. You are more careful, which is a good thing.”
Mark continues, “You have to really know what you want and have a goal. Invest in products and services and PR that are targeted, so you know that you are really going to get something out of the investment. I think my biggest mistake was spending a lot of money arbitrarily, without a plan. It can make or break you.”
Sage advice, Mark Blacknell, you do need a plan if you are going to spend a lot of money on any business.
Watch the complete video interview on the Amused Now YouTube channel: - Amused Now Blog

"Blacknell Live at St. Paul's Cathedral London"

Blacknell Live at St. Paul's Cathedral London - Social Buzz on Twitter


Mystery City Pretenders (Mixed by Adam Kasper/Lee Slater Air Studios London), July 2017 

Blue Arrow, 2013

When Rain Was Fun, 2015 



Mark Blacknell is a gifted artist whose distinct style of story telling first evolved during jam sessions in the working-class neighborhoods of Philadelphia, PA. His brand of songwriting/performance are widely viewed as spiritual successors to the classic rock tones of the 60's, but he adds to this unique elements that belie the spirit of his extraordinary life. Known for sophisticated lyrics and production coupled with a catchy, often hopeful feel, Blacknell's sound is truly his own.

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