Mark Oliver Everett

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Mark Oliver Everett
EelsLive.jpg
Everett playing live in Sydney, Australia in 2003
Background information
Birth name Mark Oliver Everett
Also known as E, MC Honky
Born (1963-04-10) April 10, 1963 (age 51)
Virginia
Origin United States
Genres Alternative rock
Occupations Singer/songwriter, producer
Instruments Vocals, guitar, piano, keyboard, drums, bass guitar
Years active 1991–present
Labels Polydor, DreamWorks, EWorks, Vagrant
Associated acts Eels, MC Honky
Website eelstheband.com

Mark Oliver Everett (born April 10, 1963) is the lead singer, songwriter, guitarist, keyboardist and sometime drummer of the independent rock band Eels. Also known as E, Everett is known for writing songs tackling subjects such as death, mental illness, loneliness and unrequited love.

Biography[edit]

Mark Oliver Everett is the son of physicist Hugh Everett III, originator of the many-worlds interpretation of quantum theory and of the use of Lagrange multipliers for general engineering optimizations. Everett's maternal grandfather is Harold "Kid" Gore, a legendary men's basketball, football and baseball coach at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.[1] As a child, Everett developed a love of toy instruments; this fondness would continue into adulthood and provide an integral part of his idiosyncratic sound.[citation needed]

In 1987, Everett moved from his family home in Virginia and resettled in California. Here, Everett began his professional musical career with two major-label albums: A Man Called E and Broken Toy Shop. The pseudonym "E" was used for both of these early recordings. While it may have caused some confusion in record stores and radio stations, the single-letter name gave the press a playful handle. This playfulness was evident in a review by the eminent writer Daniel Levitin which began: "Excellent eponymous effort, energizingly eclectic. Early enthusiasm effectively ensures E's eminence."[2] A Billboard magazine review of his second album was similarly positive.[3]

Everett's family[edit]

Everett's family has been an inspiration to him, e.g. the song "Things the Grandchildren Should Know" (he would later publish an autobiography of the same name) and the song "3 Speed", referencing the writings of his sister Liz. Everett made a documentary about both his father's theory and his own relationship with his father entitled Parallel Worlds, Parallel Lives for the BBC that was aired on the PBS series NOVA in 2008.[4]

Everett's father, Hugh, died of heart failure in 1982. His sister, Elizabeth, long troubled by schizophrenia, committed suicide in 1996, and in 1998 his mother, Nancy Everett née Gore, died of lung cancer. Following these tragedies, Everett and the Eels released Electro-Shock Blues in 1998.

His cousin, Jennifer Lewis née Gore, was a flight attendant on the plane that struck The Pentagon during the September 11, 2001 attacks.[5] The plane struck the side of the Pentagon where his father had worked, and Everett remarks in his autobiography that he wonders whether the plane hit his father's old office.[6]

In 2000 he married Anna, a Russian dentist he met at a salad factory which doubled as a psychologist's offices. The song What is this note? on the Souljacker album is in tribute to the happy days in the early days of the marriage. The marriage ended after 5 years. Although he titled his autobiography Things the Grandchildren Should Know, he doesn't have any children of his own.[7]

Career[edit]

Everett's early solo work and Eels collaborations were hailed by critics for their innovative combination of various instruments and styles.[citation needed] Everett has used everything from a toy piano in his early "Symphony for a Toy Piano in G Minor" to hammers on a radiator as percussion in 1998's "Cancer for the Cure". Despite his constant denials, he is suspected of being the man behind MC Honky, who released the album I Am the Messiah in 2003.[8]

Everett's music has also been featured on a number of films, including American Beauty ("Cancer for the Cure"), Road Trip ("Mr. E's Beautiful Blues"), Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas ("Christmas is Going to the Dogs"), Holes ("Eyes Down," "Mighty Fine Blues"), Shrek ("My Beloved Monster"), Shrek 2 ("I Need Some Sleep"), Shrek The Third ("Royal Pain" and "Losing Streak"),Shrek the Halls ("The Stars Shine in the Sky Tonight"), Hellboy II: The Golden Army ("Beautiful Freak"),The Big White (Last Stop;This Town) Hot Fuzz ("Souljacker, pt.1"), as well as most of the music in Yes Man.

During 2005, Everett and his ad hoc Eels went on tour promoting his album, Blinking Lights and Other Revelations. It was during this recording that he worked with long-time hero and influence Tom Waits. In November 2007, Everett published his autobiography, entitled Things the Grandchildren Should Know.[9][10]

The 2007 BBC Scotland / BBC Four television documentary "Parallel Worlds, Parallel Lives", followed Everett as he talked to physicists and his father's former colleagues about his father's theory.[11][12] The documentary won a Royal Television Society award on March 19, 2008.[13] The documentary was shown in lieu of a support act during their UK, US and Australian[14][15] tours in the spring of 2008. In the U.S., the PBS program Nova broadcast the documentary in October 2008.[16]

The seventh Eels studio album—Hombre Lobo: 12 Songs of Desire—was released on June 2, 2009.[17]

On January 19, 2010, Everett released his eighth Eels album, entitled End Times, which deals with themes of aging and divorce.[18] On August 23, 2010, Eels released a 9th album, 'Tomorrow Morning', which represents the final part of the trilogy begun by 'Hombre Lobo.'[19]

Everett plays an acoustic version of the Eels tune ‘What I Have to Offer’ in a deleted scene from This Is 40,[20] and follows his performance by telling Rudd’s record-executive character that the band has decided to sign a contract with a competing label.

On February 4, 2013, the tenth album of Eels, called Wonderful, Glorious was released.

Discography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Everett, Mark Oliver. "Things The Grandchildren Should Know". Book - Things the Grandchildren Should Know. Retrieved 2013-01-21. 
  2. ^ Levitin, D. J. (March 16, 1992). "E: A Man Called (E)". Recording-Engineer-Producer (REP) (Overland Park, KS: Intertec) 23 (2). 
  3. ^ Levitin, D. J. (December 18, 1993). "E's New Polydor Set Proves He's No Mere Man of Letters". Billboard. 
  4. ^ "Parallel Worlds, Parallel Lives". BBC. Retrieved 2011-06-18. 
  5. ^ washingtonpost.com: America At War
  6. ^ Everett, Mark (2008). Things The GrandChildren Should Know. Little, Brown. ISBN 978-0-316-02787-8. 
  7. ^ The Sunday Times review of Things the Grandchildren Should Know
  8. ^ Leah Della Croce (August 9, 2012). "Brighter Days". Modern Rock Review. 
  9. ^ Little, Brown Publishing
  10. ^ The Independent, review of 'Things the Grandchildren Should Know'
  11. ^ BBC4 to explore parallel universe Broadcast, November 5, 2007
  12. ^ The rock star and the quantum mechanic bbc.co.uk Monday, November 26, 2007
  13. ^ Eels News eelstheband.com Thursday, March 20, 2008
  14. ^ The Enmore Theatre, Event Details
  15. ^ Oceans Never Listen, Eels at Enmore Theatre
  16. ^ "The Many Worlds Theory Today". PBS. October 21, 2010. 
  17. ^ Thom Jurek. "Hombre Loco: 12 Songs of Desire". All Music Guide. Retrieved June 25, 2012. 
  18. ^ "End Times News". Eels. 2009-10-14. Retrieved 2009-10-14. 
  19. ^ Thom Jurek. "Tomorrow Morning". All Music Guide. Retrieved June 25, 2012. 
  20. ^ Included in the bonus features on the dvd/blu-ray release of This Is 40