Mark de Clive-Lowe (MdCL)
One of the most innovative producers and live performers you will find anywhere
Whether you call him artist, producer, composer, pianist, performer, DJ, or selecta, the multi-talented Mark de Clive-Lowe (MdCL) defies easy categorisation.The piano set the course, the keyboard is the vehicle, and with the drum machine as the fuel, the relentless skill of MdCL is underscored by a rare sonic sensibility. He’s an accomplished musician, starting out with straight-ahead jazz, before taking his music far beyond. Anchored by his Japanese and New Zealand parentage and ignited by a love of playing piano at the age of four, it is no wonder this multi-national artist has toured the globe, from NZ to the US, UK, Europe, Asia and Cuba.
A devastating live performer, the MdCL experience is marked by impromptu studio production created on stage from scratch, using drum machines, keyboards, accapella tracks and effects. The end result: live remixes built on stage for each and every gig. With bold chops like this, to call him “prolific” is an understatement, having contributed to over 250 releases and being a first-call collaborator for a wide range of artists, including Jill Scott, Jody Watley, Leon Ware (Marvin Gaye/Michael Jackson/Maxwell), Dame Shirley Bassey, Sandra St. Victor (The Family Stand/Chaka Khan), amongst a slew of others.
Currently based in LA after a decade entrenched in London, MdCL’s new album, Renegades, has guest appearances from Sheila E (Prince), Omar, Tawiah, Pino Palladino (D’Angelo/The Who), and Nia Andrews. The new LP is due for release on 21st November and features club classics flavored from soul and funk, to tech-Afrobeat and Latin twists, all orchestrated by MdCL: a revolutionary Quincy Jones for a new generation, armed with the ability to meld the science of beat-making with composed music. ‘The Why’, featuring Nia Andrews, is the first single to be lifted from the album.
In 2013 Mark will release a collaborative album with the Rotterdam Jazz Orchestra. The idea for this project was born when MdCL met the trumpeter Rob van de Wouw at an improv festival where he was performing, in Rotterdam; on hearing him play, van de Wouw asked if he would guest with his big band. Having played in big bands back in high school in New Zealand, while cutting his teeth as a jazz pianist, MdCL seized the opportunity to revisit it from this whole new standpoint: “Big band was the sound of dance music in the ‘20s and ‘30s so to apply that aesthetic and sound to my own music was going to be fun”, he says.
“…the man behind a million great tunes” – Gilles Peterson/Radio 1 Worldwide (UK)
“A Herbie Hancock for the new millennium” – Montreal Jazz Festival (Canada)
“Call it what you want, I’m sticking with the words awesome and genius” – Wax Magazine (UK)
“…the illest dude I have seen live” – Karizma (US)