MC 900 Ft. Jesus
|MC 900 Ft. Jesus|
|Birth name||Mark Griffin|
1957 (age 60–61)|
|Genres||Hip hop, jazz, experimental|
|Years active||1979–2001, 2017-present|
Mark Griffin (born 1957), better known as MC 900 Ft. Jesus, is an American classically trained musician turned rapper and experimental musician. MC 900 Ft. Jesus' music is influenced by hip hop, incorporating many sound samples.
Early life and education
The son of an army officer, Griffin moved around quite a bit before settling in Dallas, Texas in 1979. Griffin studied the trumpet and has a BA in Music from Morehead State University as well as an advanced degree in music from North Texas State University. Before becoming MC 900 Ft. Jesus, Griffin played in local Dallas bands The Telefones and Lithium X-Mas.
Hell with the Lid Off (1990) was Griffin's first full-length release for MC 900 Ft. Jesus as well as the first time Griffin had appeared on a major record label. Featuring DJ Zero (Patrick Rollins) and the single "Truth is Out of Style" which gained a cult following.
The following year Welcome to My Dream (1991) was released. DJ Zero appears on Welcome to My Dream under his real name, Patrick Rollins, because of uncertainty about whether he would have been able to tour in support of the album. His subsequent single, "The City Sleeps", was featured in the album in which explored the mind of a serial arsonist. The song sparked controversy in Baltimore when a then ABC affiliate, WJZ, ran a report suggesting that a series of arson in the area was a result of WHFS allowing the song play time.
His final album, One Step Ahead of the Spider, was released in 1994; it contained the single "If I Only Had a Brain", which became his best-known song. The song gained increased exposure from the music video directed for it by Spike Jonze, as well as exposure on MTV's Beavis and Butt-Head cartoon show. Rollins once again appears but is not listed in the credits.
Retirement from music industry
Griffin eventually became disillusioned with the music industry, and following unproductive sessions for his fourth album, felt he had taken his style of music as far as he wanted to go and overall losing interest in music citing alcoholism. Record label interest waned and eventually in 2001, Griffin officially retired. Needing a new direction, he gained his commercial pilot's license, hoping to become a flight instructor. However, when the September 11 attacks occurred, demand plummeted for flight instructors and Griffin was unable to find a job. Eventually, Griffin took a job at a Borders bookstore.
Coming out of retirement
On November 26, 2016, Griffin announced via Facebook that he was set to perform a show at The Kessler Theater in Dallas with a quartet including Chris McGuire, Greg Beck, and Wanz Dover in hopes of kick-starting a tour as well as a possible fourth album with his former label Nettwerk of which had approached Griffin about. On February 3, 2017, the quartet played a sold-out concert performing several of the MC 900 songs, receiving a rapturous ovation.
Griffin's stage name came from a sermon by Oral Roberts, in which the televangelist claimed that he had received a vision of a 900-foot-tall (270 m) Jesus, who commanded him to build a hospital on the campus of Oral Roberts University.
- Hell with the Lid Off (1989): MC 900 Ft. Jesus With DJ Zero
- Welcome to My Dream (1991): MC 900 Ft. Jesus
- One Step Ahead of the Spider: (1994) MC 900 Ft. Jesus
- Too Bad / Shut Up: (1988) MC 900 Ft. Jesus With DJ Zero
- I'm Going Straight To Heaven: (1989) MC 900 Ft. Jesus With DJ Zero
- Truth Is Out of Style: (1989) MC 900 Ft. Jesus With DJ Zero
- UFO's Are Real: (1990) MC 900 Ft. Jesus With DJ Zero
- Killer Inside Me: (1991) MC 900 Ft. Jesus
- The City Sleeps: (1991) MC 900 Ft. Jesus
- If I Only Had A Brain: (1994) MC 900 Ft. Jesus
- But If You Go: (1994) MC 900 Ft. Jesus
- Falling Elevators: (1996) MC 900 Ft. Jesus
- Chamy, Michael (October 18, 2001). "Spider Webs: Mark Griffin resurrects MC 900 Ft. Jesus". Dallas Observer. Dallas, Texas: Voice Media Group. Retrieved 2014-11-13.
- Brennan, Carol. "MC 900 Ft. Jesus Biography". Musicianguide.com. Retrieved 2014-11-13.
- Heim, Chris (April 13, 1990). "An Encounter With Mc 900 Ft Jesus". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2014-11-13.
- Migaldi, Renaldo (April 12, 1990). "MC 900 Ft. Jesus with DJ Zero". Chicago Reader. Sun-Times Media Group. Retrieved 2014-11-13.
- Popson, Tom (November 8, 1991). "Mc 900 Ft Jesus: A Fascination With Aberration". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2014-11-13.
- Vognar, Chris (January 7, 2014). "Spike Jonze dishes on his classic music videos (and Dallas'MC 900 Ft. Jesus)". The Dallas Morning News. Archived from the original on November 13, 2014. Retrieved November 13, 2014.
- Hughey, Jesse. "MC 900 Ft. Jesus Lives". Dallas Observer. Dallas, Texas: Voice Media Group. Retrieved 2014-11-13.