30 April 2013 - MARK NEEDHAM - Guest Author & Musician

MARK

NEEDHAM
- Guest Author & Musician -

G'day guys,

Today I welcome an author and musician - Mark Needham from New Hartford, New York.  Welcome, Mark ...

Mark the author:

TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF AND YOUR WRITING JOURNEY.

It’s sort of the same as my journey as a musician. I want a better world. I found that the Pen is mightier than the Sword. I love science fiction. Stories of what could be. I would play around in my head constantly of fantastic situations. Enormous machines, angels, dragons, aliens, wars and the great men who fought them. I thought one day out of the blue “I should be writing this down”.


WHEN AND HOW DID YOU BECOME A WRITER?


When I was seventeen, I felt a fire in my heart and I put pen to paper. That was an exciting time. I loved building the story. And the dialogue! I Love dialogue more than anything else in writing. I want to master it. I want to completely entrance the reader with the character’s words. I want to make movies where entire scenes are made by the subtlety spoken words of rivals. I want you to feel everything the character feels, because they said it so well. 


WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT BEING A WRITER?


The feeling of giving other people feelings.
 
WHAT WERE YOU IN A PAST LIFE, BEFORE YOU BECAME A WRITER?

This is always the same answer for me. This is my favourite question. Without giving you the huge back story, I believe I was a rebel leader from Arabia or Africa. A young prince that wish to take down an empire that was corrupt. I dreamed of liberating the people and helping them realize they were their own Kings and Queens.

WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST WRITING ACHIEVEMENT?

I finally published my book! I just recently signed a contract with Tate Publishing out of Oklahoma. That is a feeling you only get once. It is initiation! I am very proud of it. It is the beginning of the rest of my life as an author.

WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON AT THE MOMENT?

Probably one of my favourite projects to date. It is a screenplay called The Catacombs. The concept is very original. I am keeping it under locks and keys. I will say it is a dark drama, with comedic undertones. It’s about Death and all her friends. Why death has become such a big part of our existence. How it impacts us. It is alot of fun writing and I can’t wait to complete it. I’m really enjoying the Screenwriting’s pace. It’s a very different way to tell a story. It’s alot more action alot less words.

WHAT INSPIRES YOU?

People. Life, the Karmic Nature of the universe. The dual nature of the universe. The concept of the Temporal Illusion; Fourth dimension misinterpreted. Really weird stuff like that. The Great Work. The Rosicrucians. Alchemy. The life of Jesus, MLK, John Lennon, Ghandi, Alexander the Great. Anything everything, the world is a strange wonder, I would never want to take a break from new inspiration and new knowledge; new things are to be known every second of everyday. Every expanding is the nature of things. It’s a race you can’t finish I don’t think. That’s inspiring too.


DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR NEW WRITERS?

Hemmingway said something along the lines of  “All you have to do is sit in front of a typewriter and bleed” I don’t have anything to add besides, don’t forget to type something.

DO YOU SUFFER FROM WRITER’S BLOCK?

No, I don’t believe in writer’s block. I believe there is a time to write and a time to do other things. Life can be like water in a stream, always flowing. It’s you decision to dam it up with premature desires. If you can’t write then don’t write. Wait and try again tomorrow. Maybe it’s not time. Plus I can jump from music to the screenplay to something else. Maybe a poems. I learning alot becoming an adult. I learn not to force things. Art is about art.  I try not to forget that.

WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST JOY IN WRITING?

The creative process. The building of unknown words. I believe artist are the closest emulation to God. Creating worlds of great detail where before nothing was. Something incredible.


IF YOU WERE STUCK ON A DESERT ISLAND WITH ONE PERSON, WHO WOULD IT BE? WHY?

My girlfriend. Because she’s amazing. And she’s smart, and funny, and braver than me. She will help me fight the Apex predator on the island. Establish a base and gain territory. Create a DE-Salination apparatus and till the land if possible. Gather fruit and stare at the stars.

WHAT WOULD YOU SAY IF YOU HAD THE CHANCE TO SPEAK TO WORLD LEADERS?

“Seriously, no seriously, really, what are you up to? Uh uh uh, Don’t gimmie that, don’t insult my intelligence. Really. Why?”


DOES THE PUBLISHING INDUSTRY FRUSTRATE YOU?

No. Some of them are very busy and don’t think they have time to care about you or your development as an artist. I respect that. That is their view on life. There are many who do care and will be honest with you. That’s really cool and gives me a good feeling about the structure of the whole thing. Most won’t help but there are some compassionate people out there that do take the time. I want to thank those that did that for me. Then every now and then there is that publisher that picks you out of the crowd and says, “There you are, yea that’s it come with me.” So no, I think I did get frustrated for a while but that was before, when I blamed others for my misfortune. 


WHAT WAS YOUR FAVOURITE MANUSCRIPT TO WRITE? WHY?

Missions. The book that is being published now. Because it is a direct reflection of my feelings for humanity. It is the first part of what I intend to be a series, it is sort of the beginning of my manifesto. I believe it will end up being my “Utopia”  or something like it.


WHAT SHOULD READERS WALK AWAY FROM YOUR BOOKS KNOWING? HOW SHOULD THEY FEEL?

Bothered. Frustrated with the way things are. Excited of the possibilities in their own lives and for that of humanity. They should know all things are possible, and that they hold the key to everything.

             WHAT’S YOUR ULTIMATE DREAM?

This is a good question. I had a dream. A big one. But very recently it is no longer. My dream is to dream for now. And see what happens. I know I want to travel and write and enjoy life. Dance a little. Know things, feel things. I guess my Ultimate Dream is the Ultimate Experience.

WRITING IS ONE THING. WHAT ABOUT MARKETING YOU, YOUR BOOKS AND YOUR BRAND? ANY THOUGHTS?

This is not my strongest department. I was hoping you had some thoughts haha. Seriously though I pound pavement, I talk to people. I get brave in public places, I use social media. I make videos on Youtube. I Work to save up money to use advertising companies. Marketing is really the next big step for me. I’m at the stage of contemplation.

ANYTHING YOU’D LIKE TO ADD?

Thank you for this opportunity. This is my first legitimate interview. This means a lot and I had a lot of fun doing it. And thank you to all people that read it. Thank you for finding what I said pertinent in your life. Peace and Love.

Mark the musician:


TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF AND YOUR MUSIC JOURNEY.


Well, I guess I would say I want to change the world for the better. That is the most important characteristic that lead me to want to make music. I was young when I began to have a weird feeling about the world. Something didn’t feel right. So I began to jot down thoughts. Nothing complicated. They were sort of like journal entries.  I began to see that the things I said had a substance. Something like emotion on paper. I could feel it as I wrote. I was usually really upset when I wrote it but I thought, this is important, this is something meaningful and real. I started to play with the words and turn out a sort of unorthodox poetry. It was very strange and I think I was probably the only one that would have understood it. I liked Rock and Roll as a kid. The very notion of Rap music made me scoff. Then for some reason or another I started listening to Eminem. I was inspired. He blew my mind. And then I started into other contemporary Hip Hop acts. I really started getting into it. Then there was Tupac. That’s when I realized I was meant to write Hip Hop. 

Hip Hop for me is Poetry in action, it’s freedom of speech, it is focus on what is being said. You can get lost in a guitar line and a good drum set. In Hip Hop, I got lost in what was said. And I knew I had so much to say myself.  From that point to now was an internal battle of will and courage. I had to understand myself and what was going on, on the inside. I sort of figured that out. That’s when “The Apology” was finally finished.



WERE YOU INTERESTED IN MUSIC AS A KID? WHAT TYPES OF MUSIC?


 I liked Rock and Roll and Country, primarily because that’s what my parents listen to when I was very young. I fInd art in all music now. I have no bias. Though I think my favourite music would have to be Indie Folk like Fleet Foxes, Mumford, Arcade Fire(hope I’m classifying them right) because of how they make me feel. I feel sort of invincible when I listen to them. I think they see life as a fantastic thing, an undefinable journey and therefore an exciting one. For the most part people see life as a drab thing like a sludge we’re pushing through. Commercial music is saturated with Hedonism and the abandonment of self for the physical pleasures.  Perception is everything. Their perception (Indie Folk artist) lights the world up a bit. I like that. These answers are really long. I apologize if I’m getting carried away.



WHEN AND HOW DID YOU BECOME A MUSICIAN?


The obvious answer to me and the people that know me, is when I started the album and produced it, which is recently. Spring of 2011. But I wrote for many years before that.


I believe the honest and true answer was the moment I had an urge to speak to the world about how I felt about it and about myself. I was 17 (2003) when that happened.





WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB?


For music, It’s the creative process. The building of a song. The excitement I feel when a verse is manifesting itself in my mind. It’s a rush sometimes. I get a whole song in my head in thirty minutes and I’m rushing to my phone or a notebook to write it down. The lyrics are so perfect in my mind and I can imagine the beat and they way it will make people feel when they hear it. I get excited for them. That is something that gets my blood pumping and my heart racing. Talking about it makes me excited.



WHAT IS THE HARDEST THING ABOUT BEING A MUSICIAN?


In the Rap game we call them haters!  It’s the Ego. Everybody thinks they’re famous in this line of work. I find I am a stranger in a strange land almost everywhere I go, but with the music, it can be so much tougher to deal with. You go in there looking to make art and collaborate and become a star, help the people you meet get there too. What you find is a place that can get really cut-throat. People can be really heartless when it comes to getting ahead. I’ve found that they don’t see that working together is a strong modality; synergy is something of a miracle mechanic. People still believe stepping on other people to climb up gets you there faster. I get looked over intentionally when a great opportunity shows up for me because people get scared you’ll get there before them and they don’t trust that you’ll remember them. It’s a sad thing. Fear is a killer.




DO YOU WORK FOR YOURSELF, OTHERS OR BOTH?


I work mostly by myself, I like working with people but it’s hard to maintain a good connection where I’m from. The area needs a hug in a big way. I like to collaborate and help people reach their goals. It excites me to see an artist triumph. Those after my own heart.  I worked with a few people on the album for the instrumental music and the engineering.  Those skills are not my Forte’ yet but I’m learning.
  
WHAT WERE YOU IN A PAST LIFE, BEFORE YOU BECAME INVOLVED IN MAKING MUSIC?


This is my favourite question. Without giving you the huge back story, I believe I was a rebel leader from Arabia or Africa. A young prince that wish to take down an empire that was corrupt. I dreamed of liberating the people and helping them realize they were their own Kings and Queens.

 

WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON AT THE MOMENT?
A new Album actually. Right now I’m calling it Pharaohs and Prophets. I want it to dive into other genres quite a bit. I don’t want it to be able to be classified primarily as Hip Hop, but of course, that’s in the blueprint.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE TYPE OF MUSIC?
Indie Folk and then I like some psychedelic stuff like Pink Floyd and MGMT. I love NIN, Led Zeppelin, Kanye West, Eminem, Tupac, Kid Cudi, Childish Gambino, I could be here all day. There are so many Gems. Kings of Leon, My Morning Jacket, Roling Stones, Gorrillaz, Artic Monkeys. All day.



WHAT’S THE GREATEST COMPLIMENT YOU’VE EVER RECEIVED?
One time my song was on the radio and my friend Antonio called me. I never heard someone sound so genuine. He said it was great and awesome that it was on and he liked the song. But it wasn’t what he said; it’s how he said it. I knew he meant it in a real way. It really moved me that he was that happy for me.

DESCRIBE THE FUNNIEST MOMENT YOU EXPERIENCED IN YOUR WORK?
When I’m in the booth, sometimes I mess up and I say the craziest things. There not words there just really strange noises that were almost words. Words that didn’t make it haha. We keep a record of them and play them back sometimes. That always makes me laugh till my stomach hurts.



HOW MANY SEPARATE PIECES OF MUSIC HAVE YOU PRODUCED?
Just this Album that came out. I do mix tape stuff with friends sometimes it isn’t so serious though. That’s nice too. I get to make songs about that Hedonistic Mindset. It’s like I usually do laps in the pool but sometimes I sit in a Jacuzzi and just relax and have more fun then I should.



OTHER THAN MAKING MUSIC, WHAT ELSE DO YOU LOVE?
I love to write anything. Stories, poetry, my philosophical thoughts, Comedy, Sci Fi drama. Anything and everything involving story, I may write or want to write in the future.
I love the people close to me. I love life, it is such an indescribable thing. An impossible thing in a casual world. Yet here we are, Singing and dancing, and fighting and loving, breathing and thinking for ourselves. I love that, it’s strange and amazing.
 

IF YOU CREATED MUSIC FOR THE LEADERS OF THEWORLD, WHAT WOULD IT BE ABOUT?


I’d be careful what I said. Wow this is a great question. An extremely difficult one to answer. My first thought is “Will they see this?” Hmm. It would be a song full of questions. It would be a Parlay for discourse; it wouldn’t be my ideas to make the world a better place or what they should do. They know those answers already. I would try to sit at the adult table and get past beating around the bush in a polite sort of way. I would call the song “Why”.





My music Album:




(Also Available at several streaming and download sites besides Itunes including Amazon, Spotify, Google play and many others)



The Book will be available soon digitally and physically through Tate Publishing. It is called Missions: War and Windmills Second Edition









Twitter: https://twitter.com/Logos_Grows




Clancy's comment: Mm ... a man with multiple skills.

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