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18th April 2023

Young Blood and El Dorado


Q: It’s already well documented that Young Blood has a lot of your pain in it. It’s has been out for a while now, given how much emotion you put into your playing, when you play the songs live, does that pain surface a bit, do you draw on it or is it more cathartic?


MK: Hmm. It’s a little bit of all of that. Cathartic for sure as I know where I was and where I am now. It’s also a little bit of reliving the moment and being able to draw from that and that in itself is cathartic so it’s kind of a circular thing which is good.


Q: I have to say that there were a lot of us out there that were worried you might not make it…


MK: Yeah I didn’t think I would.


Q: You look well now though.

MK: Thanks Man. I feel good. (smiles)


Q: The amp you used you affectionately call ‘Old Sparky’…


MK: Yeah! (laughs)


Q: Does she travel with you on tour?


MK: No she’s a studio beast. Not very high voltage, it’s an old Gibson amp and somebody rehoused it in this green plywood makeshift chassis and it’s a wonderful sounding amplifier.


Q: How do you replicate its sound onstage?


MK: Ah…you know, you don’t because live is a completely different trip for me. The heat and the fire you get live, Old Sparky gives that but at a much closer range. To replicate that live requires a bit more headroom.


Q: On El Dorado you had Gene Chrisman on drums. He played with Dusty, Elvis, Pet Clark, Aretha, Wilson Pickett, Solomon Burke…what do you learn from a veteran like Chris?


MK: (Smiles) Man I just worked with Bubba and the rest of them that were there. What can I say? Gene just brings this warm, comforting energy to the session where you just know it’s all going to be all right. The track is going to be Gene Chrisman certified which means it’s going to be right on time and exactly what you want. There was no anxiety or worry if we were going to get everything done. Those guys are so locked into the track that when we did that record, we were cutting six songs a day.


Q: Six in a day?

MK: Yeah. We finished the record in three days because they were so locked in. There were no overdubs because we didn’t need them.


Q: They must have told you some great stories…


MK: (laughs) Yeah I got some crazy stories from Billy Sanford but I don’t know if I can repeat them outside of school (smiles) but they were very funny man.


Playing guitar


Q: You are usually listed as a southern rock/blues guitarist but you are much more than that…


MK: Thanks.


Q: …your family obviously influenced your playing and you’ve sited Kossoff and Hendrix and many other Rock pioneers as influences. Have you also been influenced by people like Robert White from Motown or Steve Cropper for example?


MK: Yeah a little bit. Rhythmically I really love Reggie Young, Bobby Womack, people like that. Those kinds of guys would creep into my playing sort of second-hand because I was listening to Bobby Womack’s voice and listening for Otis Redding’s voice or any number of the Motown’s artists, trying to replicate or emulate on the guitar. So those incredible rhythmic things they were doing on the guitar, doing just enough for what the track needed, kind of seeped into my playing without me really noticing it. I was listening for the melody and the vocals but that’s what I was hearing in the background.


Q: How would you categorise yourself?


MK: Oh that’s un answerable. (smiles). I just like to play.


Q: You get into Jazz much?

MK: Yeah. I studied Jazz for three years when I was in High School and I continue to try and learn anything I can. I travel with all these cats on the road (gestures to the band) and they all come from Classical, Jazz, Marching Band backgrounds and they are all good, well steeped in all music areas. I have my little bit of music theory that I learned which is just a drop in the bucket compared to these guys. It’s important to understand it right?


Q: Yes.


MK: It’s like the English language. We both speak it but we both have a very different dialect but we both understand the vocabulary and have the same basic grammatic skills when we are talking like this. We don’t think how every word is spelt, right? We’re just talking.


Q: That’s a great analogy. Thank you.


Q:  I’ve struggled to play guitar for years and I could never get how to play Blues. I could learn the scales but my playing was never good. Is it something that is in you that just needs to come out? Can it be learned?


MK: I think so. The principals of Blues, I think a lot of people try to do it but I’ve said before, it’s all about the intention and if you are hurting, you are coming from a real place; the pain and anguish is at the forefront of that. It’s American Folk music but it turned into Blues because it’s from the Mississippi Delta and the black Americans that were going through this terrible time, the oppressive era of our country. To replicate that…can you? I mean, that’s the question but if you can pull from your own hurt, your own anguish, then it’s all about the intention. Yeah, the basic principal of the Blues, you can learn but then are you able to play?


Q: If you are in a jamming with a band and someone gives you the nod to take a solo, what goes through your mind?


MK: Oh wow…(smiles). I never really thought about it man. I guess I just toss it in the air and rather quickly decide, on the tone I have going through somebody else’s amp, who just played before me and what did they do, how I can set myself apart from that and still express myself to the fullest of my ability given the tools that I have out here.


Q: And you do all that in half a second…


MK: Yeah (big smile) I also need to know what key it’s in. (laughs)


Q: Where do you want to take your playing in the future? Would you like to dip your toes in other waters or are you happy just cruising as you are?


MK: Well yeah. There’s something to be said for just cruising and seeing where the road takes you but you run into a lot of roadblocks that way. It’s good to have map but me and Rick Rubin have been quietly working on this record for two years which has some rather interesting guitar parts on it that are more like the cats that you and I mentioned. More melodic kind of things, more written parts in addition to these soulful Folk songs that I’d written. That record I plan to put out this Fall if all goes to plan and also me and the guys are getting back into the studio in May and trying to do more of a collaborative effort so I’m just going where the songs take me now. When we are playing live, we like to get into some Avant Garde stuff, just full freedom of expression of the mind and the body and the soul.


Q: It is a cracking band.


MK: I’m real lucky man and we all get along offstage as well.


Q: Well I always say that luck is when experience meets opportunity and when you see a player with the right personality, you knew, ‘That’s the guy’.


MK: (laughs) Yeah right! That’s a good way to put it. It was a lot of trial and error because we found a lot of great players but when you’re sharing on the road…there’s and eight-piece band and then the crew so there’s twelve or thirteen of us running around together. It’s a small satellite so there’s no space for any egos, especially from me. I try to be a good leader because you want people to follow you into battle and you’re not going to follow an asshole into battle. (smiles)


Home is where the heart lies


Q: You’ve been on the road since you were very young. You have a lot of shows lined up in 2023. Do you call the road your home?


MK: I feel at home out here but when I’m with my dogs and my cats, my wife…


Q: You’re married now?


MK: I’m married. We got married in February.


Q: Congratulations.


MK: Thank you. That one was luck! I’m very blessed. She’s a beautiful and takes good care of me. She’s at home right now and she’s really my home. Whenever I am with her is home.

Q: Home is where the heart lies Marcus.


MK: Yes.


Q: Do you have any hobbies?


MK: I love a good movie, I love a good television program, I love fishing.


Q: I haven’t been fishing for years…


MK: It’s great man! We should go.


Q: I’d like to take you up on that one day but for now, thank you for your time and have a great show.


MK: Thanks man. I appreciate your research.

Anchor 1

Marcus King(マーカス・キング)



Young Blood からEl Doradoへの道


Q: 『Young Blood』にあなたの痛みが込められていることは、既によく知られていることです。もう発売されてからしばらく経ちますが、あなたが演奏に感情を込めていることから、ライブで曲を演奏する時、その痛みはまた表面化するのでしょうか、それともそれを利用するのでしょうか、それとももっとカタルシスを得るのでしょうか?

MK: ん-・・・。そのすべてが詰まっているね。自分というものを意識して、今どこにいるのかが分かるから、確かにカタルシスはある。また、その瞬間を追体験することで、そこから引き出されるものがあり、それ自体がカタルシスとなるので、循環しているようで良いことだと思うね。


Q: あなたがブレイクしないかもしれないかもと心配していた私のような者がたくさんいたことも事実なのですが...。



Q: でも、今はお元気そうですね。



Q: あなたが使っていたアンプは、親しみを込めて「オールド・スパーキー」と呼んでいましたね...。



Q: ツアーには一緒に持っていくのですか?



Q: そのサウンドをステージでどう再現するのですか?



Q: 『El Dorado』ではジーン・クリスマンがドラムを叩いていましたね。ダスティ、エルビス、ペット・クラーク、アレサ、ウィルソン・ピケット、ソロモン・バークと共演した...クリスのようなベテランから何を学びますか?

MK: (微笑みながら) ブバやそこにいた他の人たちと一緒に仕事をしただけだよ。なんて言ったらいいのかな。ジーンは、セッションに温かくて心地よいエネルギーをもたらしてくれるんだ。トラックはジーン・クリスマン公認のものを使用する予定なので、時間通りに、思い通りのものが出来上がるはずさ。すべてやり遂げることができるのかという不安や心配はなかったよ。あの人たちはトラックに集中しているので、あのレコードを作った時は、1日に6曲もカットしていたよ。


Q: 1日に6曲も?

MK: ああ。3日間でレコードを完成させたのは、彼らがとても集中していたからさ。オーバーダビングは必要なかったんだ。


Q: きっといろんないい話を聞かせてくれたんでしょうね。

MK: (笑)ビリー・サンフォードからクレイジーな話を聞いたけど、学校の外でもそれをやれたかどうか(笑)。でもとっても愉快な人たちだよ。




MK: ありがとう。


Q: ...あなたの家族は明らかにあなたの演奏に影響を与え、あなたはコゾフやヘンドリックス、その他多くのロックのパイオニアから影響を受けたと述べていますね。モータウンのロバート・ホワイトやスティーブ・クロッパーのような人たちからも影響を受けていますか?

MK: ああ、少しはね。リズムという点では、レジー・ヤングやボビー・ウォーマックといった人たちは凄く好きだよ。



Q: ご自身をどのようにカテゴライズされますか?






Q: そうですね。



Q: 素晴らしい例えですね。ありがとうございます。私は長年ギターを弾くのに苦労してきましたが、ブルースの弾き方を知ることはできませんでした。音階を覚えることはできても、演奏は決してうまくはなかったんです。自分の中にある、隠れた才能というものなのでしょうか?それは学ぶことができるのでしょうか?

MK: そう思うよ。ブルースの原理、多くの人がやろうとすると思うんだけど、前にも言ったように意図が大事で、傷ついている人は本当のところから来ている痛みや苦悩がその前面に出ているんだ。元はアメリカのフォークミュージックだけど、ミシシッピ・デルタやアメリカの黒人たちが、この国の酷い時代、抑圧された時代を経て、ブルースに変わっていったんだ。それを再現するのは...できるのか?それが問題なんだけど、自分の傷や苦悩から引き出せるのであれば それは意図の問題なんだ。そうだね、ブルースの基本的な原理は学ぶことはできても、その後、演奏できるようになるかどうか?


Q: バンドでジャムっているときに、誰かがソロを取るように指示を出したら、どんな心境になるのでしょうか?

MK: おぉ・・・(微笑む)。僕はそんな男について考えたことはないね。他の人のアンプを通したときの音色や、その人の前に演奏していた人、その人がどんなことをやっていたのか、どうすればその人と差をつけられるか、そして、ここにあるツールで自分の能力を最大限に発揮できるかを、ただ行き当たりばったりですぐに判断するんだ。


Q: しかも、それを半秒でやってしまう...。



Q: 今後、自分のプレイをどこに持っていきたいですか?他の海に足を踏み入れてみたいですか、それとも今のままクルージングを楽しんでいますか?



Q: 触媒のようなバンドですね。



























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