It’s Independence Day and it’s party time. What could be better than some “feel good” music and marveling at the bass playing of Mark King and Level 42. Mark was born in Cowes on the Isle of Wight in 1958. He started out as a drummer, but took up the bass at age 19 while working in a music shop. In 1980 he was invited to a jam at the Guildhall School of Music and connected with keyboardist Mike Lindup and the Gould brothers, guitarist Boon and drummer Phil. The connection would become Level 42, the band’s name chosen after they read The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy. What is the answer to the ultimate question? 42! What’s the question? Well, read the book.
He has an incredible gift for playing and singing wildly different parts simultaneously. A consummate thumb thumper, he developed the habit of wearing black electrician's tape on his left thumb after he split it open on a gig in Holland. They still had a bunch of gigs to play so he wrapped his thumb with tape and kept on going. Eventually he got accustomed to the feel and it's been a trademark of his style ever since. Check out the opening vocal on Sandman. Level 42 is a happy upbeat group, perfect for partying on the Fourth. Keep it light, have fun, and stay safe.
Mr. Pink Bass solo: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QKI8pFqWm0s
Live with Level 42: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jR-yS7z9Qdw
Love Games: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qXZoowWAPZA
The Chinese Way: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IikoPK2GYPY&feature=related
Take a look: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Of7QUmIvr4&feature=fvw
Physical Presence: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UihMKoD8K_c&feature=fvw
Just like that: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qglj2hg_-2E&feature=related
To be with you again: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BSpP7ixw5No&feature=related
I sleep on my heart: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T2ODNn9das0&feature=related
Dream Crazy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rs6vSkv3IDM&feature=related
Very early Level 42 Jam: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qbq6My4p7lU&feature=related
The only thing needed to make the Fourth evening complete is a good wine like a 2008 Meiomi Pinot Noir from Belle Glos winery ($22.00). Meiomi is the Wappa and Yuki tribal word for "coast," and it symbolizes this Pinot's source: the wild expanse of Sonoma Coast from Mendocino County to Marin. This is the entry-level Pinot from the family responsible for Caymus Vineyards and it’s tough to beat it in the 'taste-per-dollar” category. The garnet colored ambrosia hits your nose with the aromas of cranberries, cherries, plums and spice. The palate is rich with flavors to match the nose as well as vanilla and a touch of oak. All in all, this wine blatantly outperforms its price tag. Grab a bottle, turn up the sounds of Level 42, and watch the fireworks. Happy Fourth of July! Enjoy!