Mark DeBarge

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Mark "Marty" DeBarge (born June 19, 1959) is an American R&B/soul singer-songwriter, trumpeter and flugelhorn player best known for his work as member of 1980s Motown singing family group DeBarge.[1] He is best known for co-penning the group's popular album track, "Stay With Me", later covered by the likes of The Notorious B.I.G., Ashanti and Mariah Carey.


Early years[edit]

Born in Detroit, Michigan and growing up in Grand Rapids, Michigan as the fifth of ten and the fourth of eight brothers to Robert DeBarge, Sr. and Etterlene "Mama D" DeBarge, he sang gospel with his family in the church choir and learned how to play saxophone and trumpet from music educator Ricky Callier. DeBarge and his brothers and sister was inspired by soul singers such as Marvin Gaye and brother Bobby DeBarge, who was riding high as lead singer and pianist for the group, Switch, in the late 1970s. In 1980, Motown signed DeBarge and his brothers, Randy and El and sister Bunny, as the DeBarges and trained them for two years before the group released The DeBarges in 1981 which failed charts. DeBarge is of African-American and French descent. His great-grandfather, Arthur DeBarge immigrated to America from France.[2]


Main article: DeBarge

In 1982, the group's second release, All This Love, featured the group's hits "I Like It" and "All This Love", which constantly featured Mark's flugelhorn playing. Throughout the 1980s, DeBarge rose to international fame with singles such as "Love Me in a Special Way", "Time Will Reveal", "Rhythm of the Night" and "Who's Holding Donna Now". Mark remained in the group when brother El and sister Bunny left the group in 1986 and the following year, DeBarge released their final album, Bad Boys, which tanked when released on the Striped Horse label. DeBarge formally split up in 1989 after the convictions of brothers Bobby and Chico though Mark, James, Randy, El, their mother Etterlene, Bunny and youngest siblings Darryl and Carol got together as "The DeBarge Family" in 1991 and released the gospel album Back on Track. It was the family's last collaboration as other members carried on solo careers.

Later years[edit]

He is the father of five. DeBarge lives in California and according to mother Etterlene in an article about his family in Jet, suffers from chronic debilitation on his legs.[3]


  1. ^ George-Warren, Holly; Romanowski, Patricia; Bashe, Patricia Romanowski; Jon Pareles (2001-10-30). The Rolling stone encyclopedia of rock & roll. Fireside. p. 245. ISBN 978-0-7432-0120-9. Retrieved 10 April 2011. 
  2. ^ Arthur DeBarge
  3. ^ Jet Magazine March 3, 2008