Mark King

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by grooveguru, Jul 8, 2001.

  1. grooveguru


    Sep 14, 2000
    Central PA
    Let's hear from some Mark King Fans. Comments on technique, basses, etc.
  2. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    One of the things I've found most impressive about him is his ability to play complicated lines and sing equally well at the same time. Many times the rhythm of what he's playing is completely different from the vocal parts. Not an easy thing to do.
  3. wynnguitars


    Jun 20, 2001
    "Because there's somethin' about you right and I couldn't live without you here tonight"
  4. Josh Ryan

    Josh Ryan - that dog won't hunt, Monsignor. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2001
    True, a lot of players lose the level/intensity of one when the other starts.
  5. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    He used to be the 'Flea of the 80s', at least in Europe. He turned a lot of people onto bass, not only onto slapping.
    When I started out with slapping my friends would say - 'that sounds like Mark King (or Level 42). Today it would be 'that sounds like Flea'.

    Yeah, definitely a huge influence and a great musician.
  6. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    I don't personally think that Flea's slapping is on the same level. Flea's is more an athletic type-thing, whereas Mark King's is musical and adds harmonic content. Incidentally, I find it funny that Flea is so widely known for his slapping when his best work has been fingerstyle stuff on "Blood Sugar Sex Magik".
  7. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    I used the analogy because of their status in the eyes of the public/audience, not because of their skills.
    Flea never got close to being as good as Mark. IMO.
  8. kcm


    Jun 17, 2000
    Woking, Surrey.
    My "name" is the initials of the song Kansas City Milkman so therefore I am a massive fan. I think that the main difference between him and Flea is that he (Mark) plays the drum parts as well with the frenetic 16ths slapping and popping, there are not many people that can go to that extreme. I heard a tape of him with Jonas Hellborg and he totally blew him away.
    Check out
    for the details of Marks gigs in London in November.
    I still think the earlier less commercial Level42 stuff was better and Marks "One Man " album was terrible record company influenced crap.....IMHO.
    Better to buy Trash and the Isle of Wight DVD.
  9. Angus

    Angus Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2000
    Palo Alto, CA
    It's same the same case as with Bill Dickens: Huge player, but I just can't stand the tone 90% of time!

    Great singer, though!
  10. Man, now that I know Level 42 was not new wave...or was it? Did i ever get a lot o' flak for my poll thread. Geesh, didn´t think y'all would have SERIOUS issues with Mark King being labeled this or that...


    In the end I inlcuded him on the poll because HE IS ONE ASSKICKING BASSIST. Fuggeddaboud the misclassification.

    Unique on the technique (that rhymed!) and great basslines...while singing at the same time.


    So we agree on that... do we???
  11. ...saw the website...lil' limited I guess...

    ...but Mark has some new non-Alembic basses! Whoa! Goodfellow something....the basses are J-style. Cool lookin'
  12. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    @ NWB:

    Yes :D
  13. kcm


    Jun 17, 2000
    Woking, Surrey.
    When he did "One Man" it was a totally finger style album and not very good either so he ended up with a signature Fender Jazz that was great for the low end mellow stuff but didnt cut it when he played the old Level at his gigs. Boon Gould (ex Lev guitarist) being a good friend of Bernie Goodfellow
    took a GB(Jazz style,bolt on neck) to Mark to try and he loved it. So Bernie had to knock a couple up for him. A year later Bernie built two more of the Rumour range which were neck thru as Mark tends to bend the neck like crazy when hitting harmonics.
    Due to some inconsistancy between the two basses(Mark wanted two exactly identicle basses) he went back to his original Alembics for last years gigs. At the moment Status are building him a signature bass so who knows what he'll use this year.
  14. CYoung


    Nov 30, 2000
    Gainesville, FL

    Ok, KCM, why did you post that Status link? Now I have a bad case of GAS for a Status S2 four-string headless in figured Walnut. B#$%tard!


    Seriously, the guy is wild. If you can find the issue of Bass Player featuring him, they spend a lot of time on his amps, basses, etc. He has to wear gaffer's tape (we call it "electrical tape") on his thumb to keep fro splitting the skin open after a long set!

    I thought his work on "Running in the Family" was too 'pop' and was not his best. I think the producer wanted a more slick package and buried MArk too low in the mix.
  15. grooveguru


    Sep 14, 2000
    Central PA
    Does anyone have acopy they want to sell or scann for me? I'd be "forever now" in your debt.
  16. Scott Cutrer

    Scott Cutrer Guest

    Aug 21, 2000
    Richmond, VA
    just recently started tr-listening to Level 42 debut CD and Physical Presence. I did not realise how much of my playing came from Mark. I hear a lot of what I try to do in his style. I love that group and Marks playing!
  17. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    The early albums really showcase what Mark does, because they weren't so over-produced as some of the newer ones. If you can find "Pursuit of Accidents" and "Standing In The Light" (my personal fave), you'll also hear Mark in his groove. There's also a great limited-release that was on a B-side (of "Sun Goes Down", I think...), called "Can't Walk You Home". Sadly, the later albums that got lots of commercial response were muddy and indistinct, IMO.
  18. any one know his string gauge?
  19. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    Back when he used to endorse Rotosounds, I recall seeing the guages and they were LIGHT! Something like .90 - .40
  20. BassistJ


    Mar 20, 2001
    Hemet, CA USA
    Close MC. He usually goes with a 30-90 set. Cool sound, I guess, if you don't mind alot of fretnoise.