Back in Europe, Afel Bocoum album nearly finished, Alba Griot Ensemble album getting great reviews, first Kankou single to be released in spring, album and tour in autumn, new projects in Paris...
Since September 2018, Mark has moved to Paris, where he has been playing gigs, both solo and with old friends including Olaf Hund, Jean-Pierre Petit and Kevin Stewart. He has also started work on a new project with Haitian poet James Noel.
In the last few months that he was in Mali, Mark recorded and co-produced with Paul Chandler the new album of the great Malian singer and guitarist Afel Bocoum, which will be mixed in the next few months, with the help of Damon Albarn and Nick Gold.
For the last couple of years, Mark has been working with the wonderful Malian singer Kankou Kouyate, and the first single from their collaboration will be released on Cannery Row Records in spring 2019, followed by a second in the summer and an album and tour in the autumn. Their second album is also nearing completion.
"The Darkness Between the Leaves", by Alba Griot Ensemble, released by Riverboat Records in September 2018, has been getting great reviews.
Sadly, Phil Stanton, the founder of Riverboat, and World Music Network, passed away in January. Another shock was the sudden passing in September of Rachid Taha. RIP.
Alba Griot Ensemble "The Darkness Between the Leaves" released on Riverboat Records 28/9/18, Tony Rose "Medicine Tunes" released on Cannery Row Records, getting great reviews, new album with Kankou Kouyate, to be released in 2019, work with Rachid Taha on his new album, recording and production of new Afel Bocoum album, move back to Europe...
Alba Griot Ensemble release their album, "The Darkness Between the Leaves" on Riverboat Records/World Music Network on September 28th, blending Celtic and Mandingue influences, to create what Global a Gogo describe as "something like what The Pentangle would sound like today, after the world music revolution made African music widely available" (link) website: www.albagriot.com
Tony Rose's album "Medicine Tunes", recorded and produced by Mark, came out on Cannery Row Records in June, accompanied by a bonus disc of covers of Tony's songs by 12 different artists, including 2 by Mark, and has been getting fantastic reviews, for example in the 5-star write-up in Rock'n'Reel: "Never maudlin, it's the songs of angels you hear coming from a bar, carried on the solid, life-worn strengths of voice and song-craft" website: www.tonyrosemusic.com
Mark has been working for the past year and a half with the fantastic young Malian singer Kankou Kouyate, and the pair have written and recorded 2 albums of new material, the first of which will be released in spring/summer 2019.
On the production side, Mark has been working on the recording of a couple of songs, with some of the finest Malian musicians, for the new album of Franco-Algerian singer Rachid Taha, one of which, "Je Suis Africain", will be the first single from the album, and will come out in autumn 2018. Mark has also been recording and co-producing the new album of Malian singer and guitarist Afel Bocoum.
After 4 years in Mali, and 4 years in Haiti prior to that, Mark moved back to Europe in September 2018, and will be based both in Paris and in Glasgow for the foreseeable future, with occasional trips back to Mali to continue work on his projects there.
Concert with Toumani Diabate at Fondation Cartier, Paris, Nov 27th, Alba Griot Ensemble "The Darkness Between the Leaves" due for release on Riverboat Records in 2018 + tour, Funteni Baby video and single released (next one coming soon), new project with singer Kankou Kouyate,Tony Rose album mixed, release 2018, Tamikrest "Kidal" getting great reviews...
Mark Mulholland has been invited by Toumani Diabate, along with Kankou Kouyate, Yacouba Sissoko, Hannes d'Hoine and Olaf Hund, to perform several songs from the repertoires of Alba Griot Ensemble and KANKOU at his concert at the Fondation Cartier in Paris on Monday 27th November, as part of the Soirées Nomades series which accompanies the retrospective exhibition of the great Malian photographer Malick Sidibe.
Alba Griot Ensemble - the project which started with Mark Mulholland and Craig Ward's 2012 album "Waiting for the Storm" has expanded to include Mark, Craig, bass-player Hannes d'Hoine and Malian musicians Yacouba and Baba Sissoko, under the name Alba Griot Ensemble. Their album, "The Darkness Between the Leaves" will be released on Riverboat Records/World Music Network in 2018, accompanied by a tour in Europe. For the tour they will be joined by Mark's longstanding friend and musical collaborator, Sean Condron. More details soon...
Funteni Baby, Mark's project with Gabonaise singer Pamela Badjogo and Malian musicians Cheickné Sissoko (percussion) and Fakourou Kanoute (bass), released their first single, "Funteni Be Bi De" in September via The Orchard - check it out via this link. The next single "Anw Te Kele Fe" will be released before the end of the year, and an album is in preparation. More info at funtenibaby.com.
Mark has been working for several months with Malian singer Kankou Kouyate and they have now completed a new album, accompanied by the French electronic musician Olaf Hund, which is currently being mixed. More info at kankou.ml
In February, Mark met up with his old friend and bandmate Tony Rose in a farmhouse in France, along with Sean Condron, Geir Voie and Stéphane Doucerain, and produced an album of Tony's songs, entitled "Medicine Tunes", to be released in 2018.
"Kidal", the album that Mark produced for the touareg blues-rock band Tamikrest in autumn 2016, was released on Glitterbeat Rocords in March, and has been getting great reviews. It is one of the albums that contributed to Glitterbeat winning the WOMEX Label Award 2017, for the 4th year in a row.
Mark produces new Tamikrest album (release March 2017); Afro-Haitian Experimental Orchestra album getting great reviews (Glitterbeat wins WOMEX label award again); Two Dollar Bash complete successful French tour, more dates planned for 2017; Mark to produce album by Tony Rose; articles on Mark in Songlines and R2; Funteni Baby demo on line; Alba Griot Ensemble album ready + new website.
Mark has just finished producing "Kidal", the new album by the Malian touareg band Tamikrest, for Glitterbeat Records. The fifth album by the band, who won the Songlines award for Best Band in 2014, "Kidal" will be released on March 17th 2017.
Also on Glitterbeat, "The Afro-Haitian Experimental Orchestra" (cover below), which Mark produced and played on, has been getting great reviews, and was one of the albums that contributed to Glitterbeat winning, for the third successive year, the WOMEX label award (photo of award ceremony in Santiago de Compostela, Oct 16). You can check out this video-clip of the song "Bade Zile".
Two Dollar Bash completed a successful tour of France in July, including 4 performances at the Cooksound Festival in Forcalquier, in the Alps. Video clips from these gigs are currently being prepared, and the band are planning another tour in France in July 2017.
In February 2017, Mark will be starting work on recording and producing a solo album by Two Dollar Bash bandmate Tony Rose.
The Aug/Sept issue of Songlines, the foremost world music magazine, included a two-page article on Mark and his different projects, and R2 magazine similarly had a feature on his various musical activities.
Mark's new band in Bamako, Funteni Baby, have started recording demos for their debut album, one of which is posted on soundcloud.
Alba Griot Ensemble's album, "The Darkness Between the Leaves" is ready, and the band is in discussion with labels to organise the release, planned for late 2017. The band's new website, albagriot.com, is now online.
Afro-Haitian Experimental Orchestra album released on Glitterbeat, June 24th; Rummage - "Somewhere Else" getting great reviews;, "Through a Glass Brightly DVD and CD released on Cannery Row July 1st; Two Dollar Bash tour in France, Alba Griot Ensemble album mixed and mastered, new project in Bamako - Funteni Baby
In June 2014, Mark worked on a project in Port-au-Prince with afro-beat legend Tony Allen, Sanba Zao and other great Haitian percussionists and singers, bass and keyboard player Jean-Philippe Dary and French electronic artist Olaf Hund. An album, based on recordings made during these sessions, produced by Mark and Olaf, will be released by Glitterbeat Records on June 24th under the name the Afro-Haitian Experimental Orchestra- more info here.
"Somewhere Else", by Rummage, has been getting great reviews, which will be posted on the site soon.
The DVD and CD set "Through a Glass Brightly" will be released in the UK by Cannery Row Records, through Highlander Distribution, on July 1st.
Two Dollar Bash are getting together in July for a short tour in France - more details soon.
Alba Griot Ensemble have just finished mixing and mastering their new album, "The Darkness Between the Leaves", which will be released in 2017.
Mark has started working with a new group in Bamako, Funteni Baby, mixing rock, pop, ska and traditional West African styles, with percussionist Cheickné Sissoko, bassist Fakou Kanouté and singer Pamela Badjogo.
More info on all of these projects coming shortly....
Rummage - "Somewhere Else" release May 27th, Alba Griot Ensemble album mixed, recording with Déné Issébéré
The album "Somewhere Else", by Rummage, Mark's project with Rusty Miller and James Finch Jr, will be released in the UK on May 27th. The album received a great review from Dave Franklin, which you can read on the reviews page, or follow this link. The album is already available as digital download on Bandcamp.
Mark has been working intensively over the past few months, along with his bandmates Craig Ward, Hannes d'Hoine and Yacouba Sissoko, and producer David Odlum, on the album "The Darkness between the Leaves". The group, called Alba Griot Ensemble, has developed from the project as a trio of Craig, Hannes and Mark which created the album "Waiting for the Storm". The album was recorded in Scotland, France and Mali, and as well as the 4 band members features an incredible cast of guest musicians - Tony Allen, Toumani Diabate, Madou Sidiki Diabate, Baba Sissoko, Pamela Badjogo, Lassana Diabate, Jean-Philippe Dary, Ruth O'Mahoney Brady. The mixing, at David's Black Box Studio in France, is nearly complete, and the album will be ready later this year.
In April 2016, Mark will be recording with Malian singer Déné Issébéré, with whom he has collaborated several times since his arrival in Bamako.
Alba Griot Ensemble to play at Festival Acoustik Bamako, and album in progress, Rummage album soon to be released, Through a Glass Brightly CD and DVD release, music used in Frankétienne documentary, Two Dollar Bash to play festival in France, Joe Armstrong album release...
2016 is getting off to a busy start indeed! Mark travelled to Scotland in December with his friend Yacouba Sissoko, a multi-instrumentalist from Bamako to record with Craig Ward and Hannes d'Hoine and the Grammy-winning producer David Odlum. In an intensive session over 10 days, they recorded the basis of an album entitled "The Darkness between the Leaves", and the project has now taken the name Alba Griot Ensemble. The group will play at a new international music festival in Mali organised by Toumani Diabate, Festival Acoustik Bamako, on the bill with Damon Albarn, Taj Mahal, M and Tony Allen. Tony Allen contributed drums to 3 tracks on the album in Paris, and other guests will be invited to participate in recording sessions during the festival.
In 2014, Mark recorded an album in San Francisco with his friends and long-time musical colleagues Rusty Miller and James Finch Jr. under the band name Rummage. The album, "Somewhere Else", produced by James Finch Jr, contains 12 songs of Mark's, mostly new compositions, and will be released on Cannery Row Records in May 2016.
This spring Cannery Row are also releasing the first solo album of Mark's long-time friend and musical colleague Joe Armstrong. The album is provisionally entitled "New Planet" and features 3 songs co-written by Mark, and a guest spot playing guitar on one song. Joe and Mark will be hooking up with their colleagues from Two Dollar Bash to play at the Cooksound Festival in Forcalquier, France, July 14-18, 2016.
The award-winning Haitian film-maker Arnold Antonin has released a full-length documentary on the Haitian poet, painter and playwright Frankétienne, which features excerpts from "Chaophonies", the album that Mark recorded with Frankétienne, as well as live footage of performances by the duo.
Another Cannery Row release is the CD and DVD "Through a Glass Brightly" - an animated film made by the Austrian film-maker Nikki Schuster combining the stained glass art, drawings and writings of Mark's mother Claire, who died in 2013, with music composed and recorded by Mark. Proceeds from sales will go to support St Margaret's Hospice in Glasgow.
Recording with Craig Ward, Hannes d'Hoine and Yacouba Sissoko, songwriting collaboration with Joe Armstrong, tour of Mali with Yacouba Sissoko...
Mark will travel to Scotland in late November with the Malian multi-instrumentalist Yacouba Sissoko for a recording session with Craig Ward and Hannes d'Hoine for their new album, provisionally entitled "The Darkness between the Leaves". The album, which is the follow-up to "Waiting for the Storm", which Mark, Craig and Hannes released in 2012, will be produced by David Odlum, and will be recorded at the Scottish session, and a subsequent one in Mali in January/February.
Mark has been working with his old friend and long-time musical colleague Joe Armstrong, collaborating on material for Joe's first solo album, which has the working title "Place and Time", and will be released on Cannery Row Records in 2016. The pair have written three songs together for the album, which will feature alongside Joe's own compositions and songs by other friends including Sean Condron and Dave Leporati.
In November, Mark will be doing an 8 date tour of the Sikasso region of Mali as a duo with Yacouba Sissoko. The tour is organised by the Malian cultural association Acte Sept with a view to promoting cultural activities in rural parts of the country, and each gig will be shared with a local band. For venues and dates, check the gigs page.
New recording with Tony Allen, new band - Rummage - album "Somewhere Else" coming soon, work started on new album with Craig Ward and Hannes d'Hoine, projects in Mali, DVD/CD release...
In June 2014, Mark worked on a project in Haiti with the legendary Nigerian drummer Tony Allen, along with Sanba Zao and other top Haitian percussionists, bassist Jean-Philippe Dary, and electronic musician Olaf Hund. The collaboration culminated in a concert on the Champ de Mars, the main square of Port-au-Prince, which was broadcast live on national television, and the recordings of the project may form the basis of an album. During the week of rehearsals, Tony, Jean-Philippe and Olaf backed up Mark for a solo concert, and the spontaneous chemistry that happened during this gig inspired the 4 musicians to get together for a recording session in Paris in November 2014, where they recorded 4 of Mark's songs. In June 2015 Tony and Jean-Philippe are coming to Bamako, where Mark will join them for two concerts with some of the finest musicians in Mali, including Toumani, Sidiki and Madou Diabate, Bafousseni Kouyate, Cheick Tidiane Seck and many others.
Photo: Bruno Lemonnier
In May 2014, Mark recorded a new album in San Francisco with his friends and long-time musical colleagues Rusty Miller and James Finch Jr. under the band namme Rummage. The album, "Somewhere Else", produced by James Finch Jr, contains 12 songs of Mark's, mostly new compositions, and will be released in 2015.
Artwork: Andy Leuenberger
Mark has started work on a new album with Craig Ward and Hannes d'Hoine, as a follow up to the critically acclaimed "Waiting for the Storm". The trio spent a week in March in France arranging the songs and making demos, and will record the album later in the year.
Since moving to Mali in September, Mark has been working on a series of different projects with various Malian musicians, including the singer and kamelengoni player Baba MD, the kora maestro Madou Sidiki Diabate, percussionist Cheickne Sissoko, multi-instrumentalist Yacouba Sissoko, singer Pamela Badjogo and keyboard player Cheick Tidiane Seck, with whom he recently composed and recorded the soundtrack to a new performance by the choreographer Aly Karembe.
Mark's album with the great Haitian poet Frankétienne, "Chaophonies", received great reviews on its release in the UK and Belgium ("artistically triumphant" - The Telegraph, "mesmerising, just amazing" - BBC Radio Scotland, "sublime, a truly great album", RifRaf, Belgium°
Mark's mother, Claire Mulholland, was an accomplished stained glass artist, painter and writer. Shortly before her death in 2013, Mark composed and recorded a series of improvised instrumental guitar pieces inspired by two series of her windows, exploring the relationship between music and colour. The Austrian film-maker Nikki Schuster combined the music with animated images of Claire's glass and drawings, plus some of her writings and recordings of her reading her poems. The film will soon be released on DVD, with an accompanying audio CD, with all profits going to support St Margaret's Hospice in Glasgow, where Claire spent the last weeks of her life.
Mark has completed an album with the Haitian poet, dramatist, painter and actor Frankétienne, entitled "Chaophonies". Mark composed music for a selection of texts by Frankétienne, and the pair did a very successful performance of the work as part of the cultural programme of the contemporary art exhibition "Haïti Royaume de ce Monde" in Jacmel, Haiti on March 23rd, 2013. The reaction encouraged them to record an album of the project, which was released in spring 2014 by Cannery Row Records and Jezus Factory Records. Mark and Frankétienne will be performing "Chaophonies" as a duo at the Maison de la Poésie in Paris on March 15th 2014, and at the Alliance française in Glasgow on March 21st.
Mark has co-written two songs with his former bandmate Joe Armstrong, which will figure on Joe's forthcoming solo album, and has also recently collaborated on a recording project with Paris-based American singer/songwriter Brisa Roché.
The British music magazine R2 has a two page feature on Mark in its November/December 2012 issue, and "All the doors are open", from "Waiting for the Storm", is included on the covermount CD.
"Waiting for the Storm"continues to get fantastic reviews, with R2 giving it 5 stars from 5, and describing it as "one of the best records of 2012", a view endorsed by 6 Days from Tomorrow, who placed the album at number 21 in their list of the top 30 albums of the year. Green Man Review describes it as « different, creative, challenging, intriguing, unique and very satisfying », and Misfit City as "a magical listen". Check the reviews page for details of these and other great write-ups in Mudkiss, Fatea, Q, the Telegraph, the Irish Times, Beat Surrender and Lonesome Highway.
Mark is playing regularly in Port-au-Prince, accompanied by Haitian percussionist Zikiki and Argentinian guitarist Andres Casalaspro.
"Waiting for the Storm" will be released in November through Jezus Factory Records in Germany via Broken Silence Distribution, and in the Benelux territories through Sonic Rendezvous Distribution. The album has continued to get great reviews, including one recently in The Irish Times.
Mark will be attending the WOMEX world music salon and trade fair from 17-21st October 2012, in Thessaloniki, Greece, where he will be participating in a conference on Thursday 18th at 15h00, along with musician Tori Sparks and promoter Rob Ellen, entitled "In Times of Crisis, Think "Indie" Why the DIY business model works, regardless of music genre" __________________________________________________
Mark is touring in late August and early September with Craig Ward and Hannes d'Hoine, to promote their album "Waiting for the Storm", released by Jezus Factory Records in the UK on September 3rd. Check the gigs page for tour dates. The album was picked by the Telegraph's Martin Chilton as one of five "summer treats of British folk music",(see reviews page) and has been getting airplay on stations around the country including BBC Radio Scotland and BBC Radio Ulster.
Mark completed a successful tour in Holland, Belgium, Germany and the Czech Republic in February and early March with Craig Ward and Hannes d'Hoine playing songs from their new album "Waiting for the Storm", which will be released in summer 2012.
"The Cactus and the Dragon" has been released in the UK, and has been getting some very good reactions - check the reviews page for details.
Two Dollar Bash's 4th album, "New Adventures", is released in the UK on April 23rd, and has already been getting some great reviews. Check the band website for details.
Mark Mulholland and Craig Ward have just completed the mastering of their new album, "Waiting for the Storm", with Jean Marnay and Bruno Lemonnier at Kadence Studio, at Chaville, outside Paris. Recorded in Berlin, Antwerp, Rotterdam and Port-au-Prince, the album represents their own take on the British folk tradition of Graham, Jansch, Renbourn et al, and as well as Mark and Craig, features Belgian double bass player Hannes d'Hoine and a guest appearance by the Haitian poet, painter, playwright and actor Frankétienne. Mark, Craig and Hannes will be touring in Europe in late February, and the album will be released later in the year by Cannery Row Records in Berlin and Jezus Factory Records in London.
(photo by Bruno Lemonnier)
New album, "The Cactus and the Dragon", now available worldwide on all major download platforms. It will be released in the UK on February 7th.
CD Release Party Lovelite, Berlin, Friday September 30th
Mark is now living in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, where he is working in a recording studio and rehearsal space with local bands, as well as collaborating with several more established Haitian artists. He will be returning to Europe every few months to continue with his projects there.
He has been working on a new spoken word and music performance with Frankétienne, the Nobel Prize-nominated Haitian poet, novelist, dramatist, painter and actor. The piece was performed for the first time at the Institut Français en Haïti in Port-au-Prince on March 4th.
Mark's new solo album, "The Cactus and the Dragon", will be released in August by Cannery Row Records. You can hear one of the songs on the CDs/MP3s page. The new Two Dollar Bash album, "New Adventures", will be released in September.
The album he is recording with Craig Ward is nearing completion, and should be finished this summer.
He has been performing with various Haitian artists, including Jean Jean Roosevelt, with whom he played a concert at the Haitian Ministry of Culture on Tuesday 28th September, and played guitar on Jean Jean's forthcoming single "Y a Danger". Mark will be returning to Europe every few months to continue with his projects there, including a new Two Dollar Bash album, which is currently in preparation, and an album that he is recording with former deUs guitarist Craig Ward. Mark's second solo album, "The Cactus and the Dragon", is now mixed, and will be released early in 2011.
Showcase at CMJ, New York, October 22nd -
Mark has been invited to play a showcase at the prestigious CMJ festival in New York. He will be playing at Googie's, the upstairs venue at the Living Room, on Friday October 22nd, 8.30pm
Showcase at MaMA, Paris October 15-16, US (re)release -
Mark will be playing a showcase at MaMA, a new festival
and conference in Paris. He will also be performing with New Zealand singer-songwriter Flip Grater at her showcase at the same festival. See gigs page for details, and you can check out the event at this
"The Devil on the Stairs" will be released in France through Differ-ant Distribution on October 4th.
After a change in distributors,
"The Devil on the Stairs" was released in the US on
July 13th through Redeye Distribution.
Gig in Paris, label showcase in Berlin - Mark
is back in Europe after a successful tour in the States, where
he played 18 gigs and two radio shows in San Francisco, Sacramento,
LA, Placerville, Austin (SXSW showcase), New York and Philadelphia.
Throughout the tour, Mark was playing with San Francisco-based
singer-songwriter James Finch Jr.(www.jamesfinchjr.com),
and was also joined on some gigs by Rusty Miller, Sean Condron
and Bill Hangley Jr. While in San Francisco, local musician
Jeffrey Luck Lucas wrote string arrangements for a couple of
songs on Mark's forthcoming album, which Jeff and violinist
Carey Lamprecht recorded in a session at James's flat.
will be playing on Wed April 21st as part of
an exhibition and concert organised by Parisian artist Anna
O, at La Generale, 14, Av. Parmentier,
75011 Paris, before returning to Berlin for a gig at 7
Stufen (Großbeerenstraße 32, Kreuzberg)
on Sunday April 25th with Allen Devine.
April 30th, Cannery Row Records is
organising a showcase concert with 9 acts at the Berlin Club
Lovelite, Simplonstr. 38, (S-Bhf Ostkreuz),
including Two Dollar Bash, Lord Mouse and the Kalypso Katz,
Strip me Naked, Allen Devine.
at SXSW, March 2010 - Mark
has been invited to perform a showcase at the prestigious SXSW
festival in Austin, Texas, March 17-21 2010
Festival Tout-Petits Cinéma - Paris Forum
des Images - Mark has been commissioned to write and
perform soundtrack music for 3 Japanese animated films from
the 1930s as part of the Festival Tout-Petits Cinéma,
a festival of cinema for small children organised by the Forum
des Images of the Mairie de Paris...more
Album in progress - Mark is currently working on a
new album, featuring contributions from a number of other musicians,
including Chris Hughes, Joe Armstrong, Orit Shimoni, Armelle
Pioline, Boris Kontorowski and Inneke 23...more
Dollar Bash to play at the Elysée Montmartre in Paris
- Two Dollar
Bash have been invited to support the successful French duo
La Chanson du Dimanche
at the legendary Paris venue L'Elysée Montmartre
on Saturday Dec 12th...more
website - many thanks to Gregg McKenzie and Andy Leuenberger
for invaluable help in getting this site together. www.greggmckenzie.com