Mark Weigle on Folk Plus

Taped Thursday April 20th, 2000

Song, live on tape (in the kitchen) - All that Matters.
 

Mark Weigle 
Angela:  Mark, welcome to Folk Plus.  That's a moving tune.  That's on your new release which is called All That Matters. It's so unfortunate that it takes a loss sometimes to allow all sorts of truths to surface. It's pretty moving.  You want to say anything about writing that song or anything around it.

Mark:  It's one I'm real proud of.  It took me months and months to write it which is unusual for me.  It came in 3 installments of inspiration.  I started writing it at the Wallflower Festival a couple of years ago, and finished it on a houseboat in Portland Oregan in a burst of tears and inspiration.  It is sort of that story that the Buddists call the slap of awakening. He comes to understand what is really important when he is in that much pain.

Angela:  I'd love for you to play something else live

Song, live on tape (in the kitchen)  - Shoulder From the Wheel.:

Angela:  Thanks, that is Mark Weigle with  Take Your Shoulder From the Wheel from his first release which is called The Truth Is. You have a real knack for intimacy and gentleness with your voice and your lyrics.  You know that right?

Mark:  Thanks.

Angela:  But then you say that your second CD has a different sound to it?

Mark:  The second CD is a little more pop, pop-folk, upbeat.  It's got some grooves on it and is a little more contemporary sounding.

Angela:  Coming from the same guy I'm sure that there is some intense writing going on.  I'm not as familiar with it.

Mark:  I wanted to sound a little more contemporary.  Who knows what the next will sound like, but I figured it was better to change with the second CD a little bit, just so people wouldn't, you know...it's a fine line between redundant being predictable. I didn't want to alienate people who like what I already do.  Hopefully  I stretch a little bit but not too much.

Angela:  So you aren't type cast?  Folksinger.

Mark:  Yeah. Well I play for a lot of gay audiences that aren't into a lot of singer songwriter music. Its hard `cuz I'll make a reference to Cheryl Wheeler-ish  and they have no idea...

Angela:  ..and that doesn't mean anything to them.

Mark:  Right. What I think is happening which I feel really satisfied about is that through my music on Songs.Com website, I encourage people to listen to some of these other artists. Since, well the last time being the 70's, singer-songwriter music hasn't really been on pop radio.  It is starting to be, with women now, like Paula Cole and Sara MacLaughlin

Angela:  There has always been an undercurrant of folk shows..

Mark:  Right, Absolutley.  But again, people who are not into that particular world have no idea that that is all going on, and thats what I hope to expose to gay people who are not necessarily into that, that there is this whole world out there. There is great music, that says something and comes from the heart and is emotional.

Angela:  I notice on this record you have Dave Carter and Tracy Grammer singing.  They were on Folk Plus in December of last year.  Great duo.  How do you come to know them?

Mark:  Actually, we met, Dave and I were both in the Wildflower Festival competition and we just keep crossing paths at folk festivals and at Folk Alliances and I've gone to see them play in the Bay area if I'm in town.  I just really really admire him as a song writer. Certainly I'm not alone in that. They are really cool down to earth folks.

Angela: So how are they from you?

Mark: Well they are up in Portland, and I'm north of the Bay area a ways, but they were coming through on tour and I was working on the CD and I had this idea to put a fiddle and a banjo, they don't sing but they do the fiddle and the banjo. I asked them to come in and they did and I was really happy it was a fun day in the studio.

Angela:  Let's hear that cut...

Mark:  I am happy to say they played fiddle and banjo from this new CD all that matters.

Angela:  So we can play that, want to introduce it? Say anything about the lyric?

Mark:  I thought I just did.

Angela:  I mean, why you wrote it...

Mark:  Well, this one...uh...I was sitting around one night listening to a Roseanne Cash album.

Angela:  Yes, this is the kind of thing I was looking for.

Mark: (laughing) It's not rocket science.  I have a tendancy to over-complexify if that's a word?  We will make it up if its not. I tend to make things more complicated than they need to be.

Angela:  It's an example of what you are trying to say.

Mark:  Exactly.  See, right there...I tend to make things more complicated in a relationship. There are several songs on the CD about my relationship with my partner Daniel and this is one of them, just me analyzing everything and making things a little more complicated and complex than they need to be,  kind of like this description of this song.  So here it is.

Angela:  Ok so this is Green and this is Mark Weigle form his new release "All that matters"

Mark:  Featuring Dave Carter and Tracy Grammer on fiddle and banjo.

                      song from CD All That Matters -       GREEN

Angela:  Mark Weigle and Green. Yes, that's a different sound! Different from your last CD and just hearing you live. Well you have this great ability then to have a foot in both these worlds;  this coffee house world and play to gay audiences. and having both, mingle and hear each other's music. I think that's what you do really well. As I said in the review I did of you, that one song you have, help me, the one where he leaves his wife?

Mark:  Do You Go.

Angela:  Do You Go.  I liken it to the movie...

Mark:  The Talented Mr. Ripley.

Angela:  The Talented Mr. Ripley. It was just so obvious to think of that movie, even though I haven't seen the movie.  But the whole idea of living a lie and prefering to be what everybody else says is ok, a phoney somebody else - prefering to make that choice over the true core of what you know you are, or what you are learning you really are - the pain involved in that!  You did that so well in that song. To take that feeling, and then it slowly transfers to the wife, so that anybody listening could be the wife, or the man and get that gut feeling!

Mark:  Exactly

Angela:  That was, I think, really well done. Great writing!

Mark:  Thanks, I really so appreciate that you get that I mean that's my hope for what I do. I don't have to be black to watch the Color Purple and get something out of that.  I think that core emotions of experiences when you distill them out are universal. I don't sing protest songs, addressed to straight people that explain being gay, or say "leave us alone" or "give us our rights". I just tell stories about people's lives.  Instead of singing "We should let gays into the military" I would sing a song about a guy in the military who is gay and how it would feel from his basic issues

Angela:  I think you're really good at getting at how somebody feels and when you sing it, I feel that way too. It's because emotions are the same.  That first song you did about loss.

Angela: Loss is loss and it's big.

Mark:  People don't tell Tracy Chapman, "Oh you're black, go play for the black audience, because you sing about being poor and black"  It speaks to where we are as gay people in our journey into acceptance into society, blah, blah blah.  Someday in 20 years we will look back at that kind of mindset - you know that Tom Hanks can't kiss Antonio Banderas in the movie,

Angela:  Hopefully sooner than 20 years.

Mark:   ...and we will look back and say how silly that was.  Now they can do documentaries on how blacks were portrayed in the 40's and we can be horrified.  Stuff is going on now with gay people and some don't realize what a double standard it is.

Angela: In the 70's I remember hearing Holly Near talk. I bought her very first LP Hang in There about he Vietnamese people. Then her next CD, I can't remember what it was called.  Well I heard a reporter was saying something about "you used to do these political songs for the Vietnamese people, and now you are doing these love songs for women"  She said "Really? I thought I was doing love songs to the Vietnamese people and now I'm doing political tunes about loving a woman"  I thought that was just brilliant!

Mark:  (laughing) Wow.  Good answer Holly.

Angela:  It sturrs everything up and makes everybody rethink.

Mark:  I have zero political songs.  I've never written a political song in my life, in my opinion.

Angela:  Then again,

Mark:  Once it leaves me...Well there's this thing about walking in my shoes. If I wake up in the morning in my lover's arms, I don't want to feel that as a political act, I guess it is, given that it's illegal and we can't get married and people can heap all this political stuff on it.

Angela:  It can't help but be political.

Mark: But when it's your everyday life, and your skin, it's a real drag to imagine your whole life being this.

Angela:  That's what closes the gap. You'll have this song, and...For some of your songs you could be half way through before you realize that it's two men. So you have a song which you're enjoying and it's truly intensely emotional and then wow by the end you think that is political becausethese are two men.  You shorten the gay is what I'm trying to say in two many words.  You are closing that gap I  think.

                       song from CD All That Matters -      " I Confess"

Mark:  It happens from the gay side too like gay press has counted nine "out" songs on the CD.  Like that Take Your Shoulder From the Wheel that I just did, that doesn't happen to use a pronoun...

Angela: No it doesn't

Mark: And that is getting pitched in Nashville to women to sing and stuff but I don't sit down and say, like Melissa Etheridge for example, as a songwriter....it would be a real hardship to me to have to ..."her rhymes with certain things" when you are writing you need everywhere you can grap from at your disposal.  To specifically have to avoid gender, there is a joke about Melissa and the "you"  not "her"   I don't sit and think, I have to get a pronoun in the song.  In I Confess I guess I use the word man in the first couple of lines then I don't think it's in there again, maybe it's in the bridge...

Angela:  But when the woman looks at him as the sister and says, yeah, I love him too  That's an example of a song I'm saying...you are not quite sure and at the end you say....ah! It's makes it slightly political even though it's a love song.

Mark: To  me it just makes it more poignant, to tell you the truth.  There's a Brian Adams song Run to You that I'm actually going to record some day if they'll let me  It's this basic, he wants to be with someobody else, but if you think about that as that somebody else being a man and this is a closeted guy who is struggling with that inside he is struggling "She's got a heart of gold, she'll never let me down" but you're the one who keeps me turned on and coming round like he can't help but...his body tells him that this is what draws him.  It's like Melissa's whole repertoire. I mean  there is a song called Shriners Park, if folks are familiar with that, where she and this person of unidentified gender had a romance in high school and they were the rebels and one person  stays in the small town and Melissa's character leaves town. Catie Curtis has a similar song The Truth Is, I hope your body's not your grave". To me the whole thing about Melissa's song, these are two teenage girls that one stays in a small town and does what is expected of her and gets married. Melissa goes out and looks back and thinks I hope you can survive. That's the juice.

Angela:  That could have been me.

Mark:  Yeah.  And if you just think of it as two lovers?  There's a lot of others,,,, Garth Brooks The Dance, I think of it as somebody who's died. On the surface its about a broken relationship but that's been done a million times.  Gretchen Peters  Cloud Minnesota that  Trisha Yearwood did is about a suicide.  On the surface of it, it doesn't actually say that, but without that part it's much less intense or powerful.

Angela:  It sounds like you listen to lots of Country, Garth and Trisha and some of the references you are making.

Mark: I listen to Country a lot in the car because it's what I can find.  I actually write country for a publisher in Nashville and I've learned a little more about being a bit more comercial and craft oriented.  I think some of that shows in the new CD too.

Angela: What do they say they want to be more commercial.  Do they actually say, we want more of this and less of that?

Mark: They do, but that's not what I'm putting in my songs...

Angela: formula?

Mark: Even if you are telling a story that is really radical, there's away to make it go down easier, audioaly, making up another word -to the ear - words that rhyme well with each other is the craft stuff, structure stuff.  I don't think it stilts the writing unless you take it too far like some of those guys down there do.

Angela: You brought something with you. Can you introduce your friend Debbie's tune and we can play that now? Tell us a little about her.

Mark: Sure, I did a songwriter round at a club in LA and I have never met this woman before, Deborah Davis, she came out in the middle of her set with this song called Love is Never Wrong. It basically chronicals, she had an experimenting romance relationship with a friend in High School, for the friend that was what was right and what would be what was right and her way of loving in the world, for Deborah, she is a straight woman and it wasn't where she was headed but to me it was incredibly cool for this straight woman to acknowledge that experience. I think it's a pretty common experience and she says I learned a lot from this. Cool song. This is Deborah Davis.

Angela:  Her CD is called Uninvited Guests and here's Deborah

And that was Deborah Davis. Station ID.

Angela:  You have your foot in both worlds you have this coffee house world, you were taking about being able to throw out a Cheryl Wheeler reference, and people will go "Yeah, Cheryl Wheeler" or the people who may listen to Folk Plus and then you have the other crowd that you sing to gay listeners.

Mark: I actually just played Phoenix Gay Pride for 17,000 people.  I was up on the stage with C & C Music Factory, Lisa Les and the Cult Fan.

Angela: So how were you recieved?  Is there a bonding because of what you are representing? Not everyone is into guitar music.

Mark: Absolutley, People - there is a huge number of gay people into Country music  I mean there are gay dance clubs in every  city in the country. There are a lot who grew up in small towns or like the cowboy motive,  Country music is the only pop kind of music with romance to it these days and stuff so that sort of connects people.  Folks who were into the singer songwriter stuff in the 70's and they don't see it anywhere now real visible, and Country is the closest thing to that.  Certainly there are a lot of gay people who are not into what I do at all. They are into dance music or whatever,  But a lot of folks who wouldn't otherwise be into singer songwriter music, because of the gay content that - I have songs about losing a partner to HIV just experiences that we share.  Guys who have been married and songs about living a life in a closet and being married.

Angela: So you think there is a danger, to, well it's a double edged sword - to get labled, Oh there's Mark, he sings all those gays songs and they don't look past that perhaps to say "Wow look at this good line - that's an amazing line," or "what a good voice he has "  Do you think the gay thing preceeds that when you talk to other people? Talk with  DJ's?

Mark: Well, depends on the person, that why I so appreciated what you did in you review in Sing Out! that was so beautiful.  I got a review in Performing Songwriter too that did a really great job.  I use those in my press release kits as a model for venues or for people who....both reviews are really about lets look at the guys writing and compare it to Darryl Purpose or...Ellis Paul or anyone out there and judge him by his writing and singing and one thing that makes him unique or this is fresh writing territory is this stuff around his experiences being gay.

Angela: Well you certainly can't ignore it, it's a lot of what you are... I think you are a very good writer, you have the voice, you have a good package, and that's great with the gay thing is an aside, but  I bet there is a fear of being labelled and playing that niche constantly.

Mark:  I do alot of college gigs and the way that works is there is the student programming board that will bring Ellis Paul...or whoever, and then then there is the gay/lesbian/ student board and when the programmers say "Well give you to the gay student board" again, its like you don't take Tracy Chapman and say "Oh you are black we will give you to the balck student union for multicultural week."  I get invited to play National Coming Out Day. Yeah.  Partly there is a practical piece about I don't have a day job so this is my career.  Playing the gay venues is my bread and butter. The folk world is a low ebb as far as commercial appeal right now. It's hard to get out there and support yourself with enough money and stay on the road.  I can mix the venues.  If I'm on the East coast for a couple of weeks, I'll do a regular acoustic club and I'll also do a gay community centre or a  pride show that helps me survive doing this. To tell you the truth, a lot of why I'm doing this is because just as a song writer, it's really hard to write a song to write a song about love from a fresh angle.  Everythings been said about love a billion times. Oh my god, I'm totally in love, I'm infatuated. Oh wow, I'm figuring out who you really are. Pulling my hair back.  Or, you broke my heart, I miss you.  It's really hard to get fresh stuff. I don't want to say stuff that's been said a million times.  I have a song about my exboyfirend who is deaf.  about me hearing, and music being such a part of my life, and his being deaf. That to me is unique ground.

Angela:  Very.  It might be an oximoran to talk about sign language.  How did you get into that and how well do you sign

Mark: I'm fluent.  People go,  "I really love sign language it's always been real intriguing".  I was one of those people who thought it was really cool and I learned a lot out of books.  My sister was a special ed. teacher with deaf kids, and  I knew enough to flirt with my ex boyfriend when we first met.  He taught me some.  He could speak and read lips really well but it felt like the whole burden of our communication was falling on him. That was unfair. So I started taking classes, he actually moved away to Michigan but I went on to get a degree in deaf culture and American Sign Language from Berkely.

                      When I see you Say    The Truth Is

Mark:  To me it's more about just interesting subject matter that hasn't been covered.

Angela: You just said something about discovering who "you really are" and I think a lot of your songs are about wow "that's who I really am" .  Alot of your songs are focused on finding what in Reviving Ophelia the author would call your True North. Especially in your teen years which are so rocky and hard anyway, to grab onto who you really are.

Mark:  For 7 years I was a counselor at a Crisis Shelter for Teenagers.  Yeah, I love Reviving Ophelia. Actually it goes back to one of the reasons why this new cd is a little more contemporary sounding and a little upbeat `cuz I  perform for gay youth groups and gay recovery programmes and part of the motivation to do a little more pop sounding thing was that  I thought younger people I think could really get something about what I'm doing. I realized that the first CD a lot of those folks 18 or 19 had no idea what James Taylor or Jackson Browne, so I wanted to offer them something they could hook into.

Angela: The Beatles

Mark: Yeah, I'd love to reach young folks with what I'm doing and discovering your True North.

Angela: Would you introduce something else from one of your CDs, and maybe we could give a website out.

Mark: The site is  www.songs.com/markweigle and there are great people there like Dave and Tracy and Buddy Mondlock, with sound clips from both CD's and Angie's review.

Angela: As always if you interested in anything I play on Folk Plus check the website the web

Mark:   What would you like to hear?

Angela: We talked about do you go.  We talked about that...

Mark:  Yeah the song is "Do You Go". There is a book and a film  that is called "Lost Language of Crayons" that it is kind of inspired by. It's a story from a woman's perspective who discovers that her husband is gay.

Angela:  OK, thanks, and here's Mark Weigle:

                  DO YOU GO
                  FROM YOUR KID

Angela:  And that's from The Truth Is from Mark Weigle and the tune was, well we heard two tunes there. We heard Do You Go  and we heard From Your Kid.  That's nice new way to talk about a subject, your Dad and your relationship. Is that true, did you invent this?

Mark: Oh, it's definately, the first half is about my Dad and the second half is my Mom. It was after years of therapy I was able to write that one.

Angela: Being a parent always wondering if I'm doing the right thing with three kids, it's just nice to hear, to think, wow, maybe someday my kids will know how I coped, what I did and how I thought I was making the right decisions.

Mark: Actually it comes from a poem that I wrote for my Dad when I first moved away from home and I wrote out this poem. And my Dad actually killed himself a couple years ago.  When I went home for his funeral, and I when into his bedroom and that poem that I had written, that the song comes from, was sitting on his dresser. Like he had taken it out to look at it.

Angela: Wow! There's another song I guess...I little too close...

Mark: Well, there is a song (laughs)...maybe on the next CD.  It takes a while for them to come through the wringer and come out.

Angela:  Well, not even that, I would think, even once it's finished and how you like it, it would take a long time before you could really sing it...and be enough attached to it to mean it and not be too attached to it to...I mean, you're supposed to sing it, you're  not supposed to be crying it...

Mark:  Yeah,

Angela:  I would imagine time would have to go by.

Mark: There is a song on the first CD,  If It Wasn't Love - about losing somebody I loved a whole lot and that's one that actually really sort of upbeat on the CD...

Angela:  So you could get through it, right?

Mark:  Well, just so that it wasn't such a total downer.  When I play it, it's actually NOT a downer, it's sort of an inspiring song.  When I play it live, particularly for an audience of gay men who I know many of them have gone through that.  I watch their faces as I'm singing it.  It gets pretty powerful...

Angela:  yeah...

Mark:  That's about writing and singing close to the core...

Angela:  yeah, cause that's powerful without anybody around you. Well, that's what I think you do well, you get intimate and inside quickly with very few words.  That's a gift.

Mark:  I know when I'm sobbing when I'm writing something (nervous laugh), even the song John about the married guy in an adult bookstore booth, touching a guy for the first time, and I can sing that song to myself just rehearsing by myself in the living room and when I really think about the situation of the guy, I can get crying.

Angela: So, you know you've got something....

Mark:  Yeah...that's how I know....

Angela:  Do you have some piece of something now that's not finished...just a thought or piece, maybe you could play?  A melody line or a little segment? Or something that's not quite done?

Mark:  Well, it's hard to say whether it's done or not...this is where it's stopped for now....

Angela: OK

Mark: there might be more...(starts playing tune...)   Partial Song  about his dad

Angela:  So that's the one. About your Dad. The hating, the loving...

Mark: UmHmm...might be more, there might not...You may hear that again, you may not...

Angela:  So that's on no C.D.

Mark: Not yet...

ON AIR:  That was Mark Weigle with a partial song, yet to be honed, about his dad.  We finished the interview discussing reviews, labelling, playing to different audiences and favorite writers of Mark's.  The rest of Folk Plus today will be songs from some of the artists that are mentioned during the interview.

Mark:  In terms of the two audiences, the gay audiences that I play for and the Folk world and singer-songwriter fans, one sort of Catch 22 there is there's ....   ....   sometimes it takes twice as much work to get the same recognition.  Like in the singer-songwriter world, like my review in Performing SongWriter  or Sing Out! - it's like "ooohhh"  Each CD has gotten really good reviews in Billboard.  But most people don't read Billboard and most gay people have no idea what Performing SongWriter magazine is.  But then, if I get a review in The Advocate or in Hero magazine or Genre or some national gay magazine, the gay people say, "oohh, you're real, that's really something" but people in the singer-songwriter world or the folk world have no idea what that is.  That's a little bit if  a Catch 22...when I print them up in my press materials, I copy the cover of the magazine, cause like, Ray Charles is on the cover of the Performing SongWriter so even if you don't know the magazine, you can say "well you must be something if they've got Ray Charles on the cover"

Angela:  Well there was a discussion on the Folk-DJ list recently, last year sometime...about is it helpful or not to take the people, the gay writers and label them that way in the library.  It was back and forth, back and forth.  Do you have an opinion on that?

Mark:  Well, my practical idea was to put a little pink sticker on the spine of the CD so they could all just be mixed in there so that if you're doing a gay theme or show, you could pull them.  There's such a range I think in that, like this week in NYC on Monday night, I'm actually here for the Gay-Lesbian American Music Awards - the GLAMA's and I was nominated for a couple of those last year and shared a dressing room with Catie Curtis. Ani DiFranco was there, RuPAUL and Melissa and Catie and the Serettes Michelle Megacello (I'm not sure how to say that [so, I'm not sure how to type it -AP]), Bruce Felanchin and all those cool people.  So, Catie and SONiA of Disapear Fear (who sings on my record) Ani DiFranco some of those folks are real "out" gay-identified.  Some deal with it in their songs and some don't.  And then there's Cheryl Wheeler who now we can talk about being a lesbian cause she finally came out.  All of us knew it for a long time.  There's plenty of other people I could name that I won't because they've not identified themselves yet.  So it becomes this weird like - do you put Cheryl Wheeler or Catie Curtis in the gay section?

Angela:  Right, right...

Mark:  That would seem goofy, cause their recognized as singer-songwriters.  One of the things I think that happens is, I also, again, I think it's one of those fine lines cause I do appreciate my gay audience and that is how I'm able to do what I keep doing.  Some gay performers rely on that novelty-niche thing as their whole...like they're not that great of a writer or a singer.  Their whole way of having any kind of career at all is to be gay.  If you got a hundred CDs passed through your mailbox, as I'm sure you do, and you just heard the music, you would go "this is not that good."  but because it's gay we might play it on a gay show. So I don't really want to lean on that crutch and alot of people do.  Because some of these great writers are closetted and aren't out there identified and they're not writing about their true selves as gay people or their experiences they might have in that...all you really have to play is some of these other folks that might not be as good, but at least - give them credit and give them some airplay for being willing to be out there. So, until we mature as a community and progress as a whole world around us, there's gonna be strange stuff like that.  Hopefully, I'll be around to be good...

Angela:  Well, not having to live a double life as far as sexuality goes, the only way I can liken it to anything is, well I have 3 kids and going through those 3 pregnancies, whether it was a stranger or a friend, what seemed to matter the only thing they'd focus on or talk about - "oh yeah, you're pregnant" because you can't hide it - you have this very huge, swollen belly which everybody feels like they can touch and talk about and it's kind of a private thing. And not that I didn't love being pregnant or having my kids, it's just that I wanted to get past that and go on to something else and I couldn't hide it.  I couldn't hide it, there I was, pregnant.  It became the focus pretty much for the last 5 months for all 3 kids and I came to loath that...

Mark:  Well, I think that's why people seek community, with people the same as themselves.  For all those 7 years I worked at the Crisis Shelter for Teenagers, I would bring up gay issues alot and like "staff, we're dealing with gay kids here, we just don't necessarily notice all the time"  I was piping up like around the hiring policy and multiculturalism kinds of stuff.  I remember one day, one of my co-workers made some comment about my constantly being this gay man, and I was like, "Oh, my god, that's when I'm here!  Cause I'm around predominately straight people.  Do you think I wake up in the morning or hang out with my gay friends and think 'I'm GAY!' - you know, I never discuss being gay around my gay friends"  Just like with my deaf friends, we don't discuss being deaf.  So when I meet people who - this friend of mine I'm visiting in New York is blind, or a friend of mine from Zimbabwe and has a really heavy accent, or when I meet people who have an obvious trait or characteristic, I specifically don't ask, "so, where are you from? - with that accent" - god, they must have heard that a million times!

Angela:  Or you say it once and then you move on...

Mark:  Right, it's part of who I am - I know that's a novelty for you but for me it's like everyday.  There's a Pat Parker poem about being this sole black freind to thirty-eight individual white people...I'm not in her shoes, but I think I can get it...

Angela:  Well, I appreciate you coming and talking so candidly with us and sharing your music, very intimate, very well done.  I'd love for you to pick maybe a SONiA tune or Cheryl Wheeler tune that I can move on to for the rest of Folk Plus for today. You got some favorites...

Mark:  Umm, Oh boy...

Angela:  You got some favorites?  That's what I did with Buddy Mondlock, I said, pick a singer-songwriter show and we'll go with it, so after I finished talking with him, we just moved into what he would want as a singer-songwriter festival.  So, if you'd like to pick some people and I'll dig them out of the library...
 

Mark and Angela, interview in the kitchen
Mark:  Well, I adore Cheryl Wheeler and I will have to go with SONiA, her most recent album, the title track Me Too Great song.

Angela:  Ok. And Cheryl?

Mark:  Oh, I get to do Cheryl too?

Angela:  Oh, keep going, you got any thoughts?  favorites? a favorite Catie Curtis tune?

Mark:  Well, these are all going to be kinda quiet pretty mellow songs...if folks in Jeffersonville can hang on with these mellow songs...Catie Curtis my favorite is The Truth Is. And with Cheryl, gosh, there's so many, the one that kills me is Sylvia Hotel, the title track.  You can play anything by her, the Bank song.

Angela:   Any other people?

Mark:  Well Dave and Tracy.  I gotta hear the new CD. I gotta tell all these people I got them air play!  Then there's Buddy Mondlock

Mark:  John Smith. Oh hes awesome and such a sweetheart. He is this Wisconsin regular guy, very white, midwest, middle class and then he is just so effortless in singing about his native america spirituality stuff that hes learned about and it doesn't seem like it's forced to be PC. Its just integrated into who he is with his down to earth Wisconsin- mid-west self.

Angela:  It is effortless and unforced.  Those are good adjectives. So maybe we will hear a tune from John Smith and others that you mentioned.  Thanks for visiting today on folk plus.

Mark: Thank you for airing me in the Hudson River Drive is that where I am Its a beautiful drive with the trees budding out, its great.  Thanks for asking me.