Marcus Singletary performing live in 2014
|Born||Chicago, Illinois, United States|
|Genres||Rock, progressive rock, jazz, jazz fusion|
|Occupation(s)||Musician, producer, songwriter, singer|
|Instruments||Bass guitar, guitar, electric guitar, drums, piano|
Marcus Singletary is an American musician, writer, and media personality.
From 2007-2009, Singletary served as an editor for and contributor to jazz.com. In 2009, he joined the staff of Examiner.com, writing primarily as 'Los Angeles Music Examiner.' From April, 2012 to February, 2015, he also contributed several articles on the George Zimmerman case to the site.
Singletary, for a variety of print and online publications, has interviewed a number of notable media figures, including Florida State Representative Dennis Baxley (sponsor of the controversial Stand Your Ground bill that faced public scrutiny during the Zimmerman trial), Carl Giammarese, co-founder of 1960s hitmakers The Buckinghams, Bruce Arnold (leader of the pioneering soft-rock group Orpheus), and Chicago's 'Queens of the Blues,' Koko Taylor and Shemekia Copeland.
Singletary was born in Chicago, Illinois. He attended Quigley Preparatory Seminary South High School, which was closed by the Archdiocese of Chicago during Singletary's Freshman year, Brother Rice High School on Chicago's South Side and, ultimately, Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary.
First formed by Singletary as a teenager in high school, rock band Jupiter's Child has recorded several albums characterized by songs entrenched within the "jam-band" musical genre's stylistics. The group performed Singletary's composition "Can't Ask For More" on the cable TV program Chic-a-Go-Go in 2003.A two-disc, twenty track retrospective, Legacy, represented all eras of the band's history and was released in 2014.
In 2004, Singletary released The Marcus Singletary Band and Capitol Hill (reissued in 2012 as Capitol Hill Reloaded). He said, "I settled into a low-fidelity groove by buying some elemental computer equipment and striking some familiar blues chords like anyone just beginning to produce records…'Delta,' a Junior Wells-style harmonica-and-drum duet, and 'Shame' utilize classic blues structures in a rock-and-roll environment. 'Best in Me' is inspired by the A-side of Led Zeppelin III, and sonic experiments follow in the forms of country-blues instrumental 'Saddleback' [and] the dark narrative 'Come and Get It.'"
Marcus Singletary was recorded at Clear Lake Audio in North Hollywood, California, mixed by Don Casale (engineer of Iron Butterfly's In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida), and released in 2008. In music reviewer Michael Popke's opinion, "Cynics among us may regard Singletary's latest material - his other albums were defined by lengthy blues solos - as a step backwards into pop territory, [but] the rest will simply enjoy these...catchy, happy-sounding tunes that may brighten an otherwise cloudy day."
Singletary on Marcus Singletary: " I would consider the influences somewhere in between Zeppelin's In Through the Out Door and the Beach Boys' 1971 album Surf's Up - an oft-ignored classic."
Sea of Tranquility noted of the concert disc Take Me Out to the Ball Game (2008), "[Ball Game] veers off into improvised uncharted territory ala "The Star-Spangled Banner,"" and David C. Eldredge of Illinois Entertainer pointed out that the CD, "finds [Singletary] riffing and then off into the freeform chording stratosphere pursuing the disc's eponymous opening chestnut and similar nods to baseball themes and icons."
The material on Smokin' (2011) materialized during concerts at venues including Los Angeles' House of Blues, Henry Fonda Theater, and Viper Room. On it, Singletary was backed by bassist Cliff Starbuck of Ekoostik Hookah and former Doobie Brothers drummer Chet McCracken. UK-based rock critic Simon Smith wrote, "Marcus Singletary has crafted a great album that has a distinctive sound, a heart and soul to smile for with a beat to boogie to...It's unashamedly upbeat and embracing while it rings every drop of sweat from your panting face as you try to keep up. Great fun."
Of Smokin', writer Kelley Simms of Illinois Entertainer added, "Drawing upon classic rock, blues, jazz, funk, and psychedelic influences, Marcus Singletary delivers some broad and competent music on Smokin’. Singletary handles all vocals, guitars, keyboards, and theremin, while bassist Cliff Starbuck and ex-Doobie Brothers drummer Chet McCracken are featured, along with a versatile horn section. Together they lay down some funky grooves and...a solid foundation." One track, "Get the Dance Gene," was featured on the August 9, 2013 episode of cable television program Chic-a-Go-Go.
Containing cover songs originally performed by artists including Jim Croce, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Elvis Presley, and the "Father of Country Music," Jimmie Rodgers, Marcus Singletary Sings Country Music Standards was released February 7, 2013. PopMatters' Neil Kelly drew links between the album and the George Zimmerman trial while comparing Singletary's public persona to the acknowledged eccentricities of Lindsay Lohan, Prince, and Ted Nugent, while others - such as journalist Dan Berthiaume - enjoyed its content: "Singletary is a deft guitarist and also has a strong voice. His clear vocals bring to life just how violent and menacing many roots and roots-influenced songs really are...Fans of traditional and acoustic music may be interested in checking out these new interpretations, still performed organically and from the soul, as they were intended."
Singletary's 2006 Rocks compilation documented the era 2000-2005 - in effect 'a sampling of Singletary's recorded blues resume.'
An extensive remastering project undertaken alongside engineer Anthony Casuccio yielded the 4-disc, forty track box set, The Wonderful World of Marcus Singletary in November, 2014. It chronologically anthologized Singletary's music career, to that point, and officially replaced four previous best-of collections and the concert disc Live on Sunset - a 2006 performance at LA's Whisky a Go-Go featured on the box set in its entirety.
Journalist Jim Pasinski wrote of the material, 'This album begins with some very early recordings done on cassettes that do show some potential in Marcus' songwriting ability at a young age. Later, you get to hear the fullness of his talents in 'Chicago Stomp' and, even though this release includes some cover songs, it's his original compositions that we find the best of Marcus Singletary. One of the highlights has to be the acoustic-shuffle of 'You Could Be Lucky', while he concentrates more on the lyrics of 'Shame' and shows off his funky side with 'Get the Dance Gene.' The heaviness of 'Can It Be Real' showcases his vocal skills, and some of his best guitar solos are collected on one album. 'Boys of Summer' is a 'balls to the wall' blazing instrumental, but you can really hear his talents on all the genres he covers. Live, he begins with the up-tempo sixties rocker 'Best In Me,' before taking over the keyboard on the retro sounding jam of 'The Music's Playin" and sexual tension of 'Can't Ask for More' before closing by channeling his idol Jerry Garcia on 'Good Lovin' and finishing with the blues romp of 'Sweet Home Chicago."
Marcus Singletary has donated to a number of causes and charities, including the Autism Science Foundation, the Arthritis Foundation, the 10th Anniversary Grammy® Camp Scholarship Fund, and the Warrior Cry Music Project of San Antonio, Texas.
Most albums are on the Aviation label, unless otherwise indicated.
- 2004 The Marcus Singletary Band
- 2004 Capitol Hill
- 2005 Live at the Foxx
- 2006 Rocks
- 2008 Marcus Singletary
- 2008 Take Me Out to the Ball Game
- 2011 Smokin'
- 2012 Capitol Hill Reloaded
- 2013 Live on Sunset
- 2013 Sings Country Music Standards, Riverbound Records
- 2014 The Wonderful World of Marcus Singletary (Box Set), Riverbound Records
- 2015 Defiance Science
- 2010 "Love is the Answer"
- 2012 "Can It Be Real"
- "Chicago TV news coverage of Quigley South closing". Retrieved 12 August 2014.
- "Marcus Singletary: Television". Retrieved 12 August 2014.
- "Sybrina Fulton Seeks to Trademark Trayvon Rallying Cries". CNN. Retrieved 28 March 2012.
- "De Rock y Freud". Retrieved 14 April 2014.
- "De Rock y Freud". Retrieved 21 November 2013.
- "Marcus Singletary Interview, De Rock y Freud". Retrieved 19 February 2014.
- "Steely Dan in Los Angeles by Marcus Singletary". jazz.com. Retrieved 30 August 2009.
- "Marcus Singletary Interviews Florida State Representative Dennis Baxley (Part One)". World News. Retrieved 27 February 2014.
- "Carl Giammarese Interview". Retrieved 19 February 2015.
- "Worcester Songwriters of the Great American Songbook". Worcester Songs. Retrieved 1 February 2013.
- "Koko Taylor Interview (later syndicated as 'Memories of Koko Taylor')". University Reporter (UR Chicago).
- "Shemekia Copeland Interview (later syndicated as 'From the Archives:Shemekia Copeland')". University Reporter (UR Chicago).
- "Marcus Singletary Biography". KIAC Media, LLC. Retrieved 23 October 2008.
- "An Interview with Musician Marcus Singletary". Eliza Gale's Interviews. Retrieved 28 January 2014.
- "Beyond Trayvon, Taking Action on Behalf of the Underprivileged". World News. Retrieved 19 March 2014.
- Torreano, Bradley. "Chicago jam band Jupiter's Child". All Music Guide. Retrieved 1 January 2003.
- "Episode #323". Chic-a-Go-Go. Retrieved 20 October 2003.
- "Jupiter's Legacy by Jupiter's Child". Amazon. Retrieved 28 November 2014.
- "Guitar Gear and Influential Recordings". World News. Retrieved 1 September 2013.
- Haverkamp, Jill. "Price Point: Chicago Studios Adapt to the Home Recording Revolution". Illinois Entertainer. Retrieved 1 February 2006.
- "Personal Reflections on Eleven Albums". Facebook. Retrieved 15 April 2014.
- Brennan, Bob. "Interviews with Recording Engineer Don Casale". Perpetual Toxins. Retrieved 1 May 2006.
- Popke, Michael. "Marcus Singletary Self-Titled Album Review". Sea of Tranquility. Retrieved 18 August 2008.
- "Marcus Singletary Biography". Amazon. Retrieved 19 March 2014.
- Singletary, Marcus. "Personal Reflections on Eleven Albums". Facebook. Retrieved 25 September 2013.
- "Marcus Singletary - Take Me Out to the Ball Game Review". Sea of Tranquility. Retrieved 15 December 2008.
- Eldredge, David. "Take Me Out to the Ball Game CD Review". Illinois Entertainer. Retrieved 2 March 2009.
- "Calendar". Los Angeles Daily News. Jack Klunder. Retrieved 7 June 2011.
- Preston, Scott. January 20, 2011 "Interview with Cliff Starbuck". Cincy Groove Magazine. Retrieved 14 June 2011.
- Smith, Simon. "Marcus Singletary Smokin' CD Review". Higher Plain Music. Retrieved 30 May 2011.
- Simms, Kelley. "Smokin' CD Review". Retrieved 30 March 2012.
- "Episode Excerpt". Retrieved 9 August 2013.
- "Marcus Singletary Sings Country Music Standards". Amazon. Retrieved 7 February 2013.
- "Marcus Singletary Sings Country Music Standards on New LP". Grateful Web. Retrieved 12 February 2013.
- "Trying Something New Again". PopMatters. Retrieved 12 April 2013.
- "Marcus Singletary Strips Down for Country Blues". World News. Retrieved 21 March 2013.
- Scales, Jason. "Marcus Singletary Rocks CD Review". Illinois Entertainer. Retrieved 29 September 2006.
- "New Music from Independent Guitar Greats".
- "Record-Journal". Retrieved 12 November 2014.
- "Record-Journal". Retrieved 12 November 2014.
- "Guitarist Marcus Singletary Releases His First Anthology". Record Journal. Retrieved 12 November 2014.
- "Gimme Some Lovin' CD Review". Record Journal. Retrieved 12 November 2014.
- "Marcus Singletary Shows Off On "Holy Guitar!"". Record Journal. Retrieved 12 November 2014.
- Scales, Jason. "Marcus Singletary". Retrieved 14 November 2014.
- "Beyond Trayvon, Taking Action on Behalf of the Underprivileged". WN. Retrieved 18 March 2014.