Mac DeMarco

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Mac DeMarco
Mac DeMarco performing in 2017
DeMarco in 2017
Background information
Birth name Vernor Winfield MacBriare Smith IV
Born (1990-04-30) April 30, 1990 (age 28)
Duncan, British Columbia, Canada
Origin Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Genres
Occupation(s)
  • Musician
  • singer-songwriter
  • multi-instrumentalist
  • producer
Instruments
  • Guitar
  • vocals
  • bass guitar
  • drums
  • keyboards
  • percussion
Years active 2008-present
Labels
Associated acts

McBriare Samuel Lanyon "Mac" DeMarco (born Vernor Winfield McBriare Smith IV, April 30, 1990) is a Canadian singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer.[8] DeMarco has released three full-length studio albums, 2 (2012), Salad Days (2014), and This Old Dog (2017), as well as two mini-LPs: his debut Rock and Roll Night Club (2012) and Another One (2015). His style of music has been described as "blue wave"[9] and "slacker rock",[10][11] or by DeMarco himself "jizz jazz".[12]

Life and career[edit]

Early life and education[edit]

DeMarco was born in Duncan, British Columbia, and raised in Edmonton, Alberta. During high school he was in several bands, including indie rock band the Meat Cleavers, alternative R&B group the Sound of Love and post-punk band Outdoor Miners (named after a song by English rock band Wire).[13][14] His great-grandfather is Vernor Smith, Alberta's former Minister of Railways and Telephones, for whom DeMarco was named.[14]; his grandfather (also named Vernor Winfield MacBriare Smith) was a judge of the Court of Queen's Bench of Alberta.[15] His mother later changed his name to McBriare Samuel Lanyon DeMarco.[14]

After graduating from Strathcona High School in Edmonton in 2008, he became a backing musician. After that, he moved to Vancouver.[16][17]

Early projects and first solo album[edit]

Living in the Killarney neighbourhood, he released a self-produced album, Heat Wave, as a part of the garage-noise/punk rock project Makeout Videotape in 2009. The album sold out its 500-unit run.[18] DeMarco worked on "psychedelic" video projects during this time.[17] He was joined by Alex Calder and Jen Clement, signed to Unfamiliar Records, and toured with Vancouver band Japandroids in 2009.[17] In 2011, DeMarco moved from Vancouver to Montreal to begin recording as a solo artist. Failing to find work as a musician, he participated in medical experiments for money[19] and worked on a road paving crew.[20] On January 9, 2012, record label Captured Tracks announced the signing of DeMarco.[21] In early 2012, he released a mini-LP titled Rock and Roll Night Club. The four-track-recorded album features skits and slowed-down vocals.[19]

Full-length debut and Salad Days[edit]

Rock and Roll Night Club impressed his new label enough that they agreed to release a full-length follow-up album.[19] This release, entitled 2, was received well by critics, garnering a "Best New Music" designation from Pitchfork.[22] One of his songs, "Moving Like Mike",[23] was licensed by U.S. retail outlet Target for a commercial.[19]

On January 21, 2014, DeMarco announced the release of his upcoming second album, Salad Days, along with debuting the lead single "Passing Out Pieces," The record was released on April 1, 2014,[24] and again received the "Best New Music" designation from Pitchfork.[25] It was a shortlisted nominee for the 2014 Polaris Music Prize.[26] Captured Tracks has announced a subscription series called "The Wonderful World of Mac DeMarco 7" Club Vol. 1". Subscribers will receive two 7" records every six to eight weeks containing various recordings by DeMarco.[27]

DeMarco made his first talk show appearance (and second TV appearance after The Eric Andre Show) when he performed the song "Let Her Go" on Conan on March 30, 2015.[28] On April 22, 2015, DeMarco announced the release of an upcoming mini album titled Another One, which was released on August 7, 2015, in addition to a video depicting the making of Another One.[29] DeMarco describes the mini album to be a collection of love songs, "It's just kind of like every angle of how somebody might feel if they're having strange feelings in their chest."[30] On May 11, 2015, Captured Tracks released the first single of Another One, titled "The Way You'd Love Her".[31] Another One received a generally favourable response from music critics, scoring 75/100 on Metacritic.[32] Still in Rock has ranked this LP as the third best of 2015.

On July 8, 2015, DeMarco released a 9-track instrumental album titled Some Other Ones and called it a "BBQ soundtrack".[33] Later that evening, he hosted a listening party in New York City (where DeMarco was based) for fans to hear Another One, where they could get free hot dogs if they donated to a food bank.[34]

In an interview with Mr. Wavvy released on August 19, 2015, DeMarco suggested that he would release Makeout Videotape material on vinyl in the near future.[35]

DeMarco appeared on the Hot Ones YouTube show on February 23, 2017.[36]

This Old Dog to present[edit]

On January 31, 2017, DeMarco announced his new album, titled This Old Dog. He also released two singles from the album on the same day.[37] This Old Dog was released on May 5, 2017.[38]

On October 10, 2017, DeMarco appeared on Charlie Rose, in which the two discussed the new album, as well as DeMarco's relationship with his father.[39] Acting as bookends to the interview, DeMarco performed acoustic versions of This Old Dog, as well as Still Together.[40]

On April 8, 2018, DeMarco appeared on FishCenter Live and had an interview with Max Simonet.

Artistry[edit]

DeMarco's style is recognizable via its use of flat drums, chorus and vibrato effects on the guitar and a generally lazy atmosphere a la soft rock records, muted and low frequency bass guitars. He has also mentioned Shuggie Otis, Black Sabbath, Jonathan Richman and Weezer as favourite artists.[41] His guitar-based compositions have moved from glam-inspired works to what reviewers describe as "off-kilter pop"[19] or "folk rock".[42] DeMarco has self identified his style as "jizz jazz," going as far as naming his apartment studio Jizz Jazz Studios, as mentioned in a documentary starring himself, Pepperoni Playboy.[43]

Equipment[edit]

DeMarco performing with his Teisco electric guitar (2013)

DeMarco is known for using vintage equipment and gear for his music. He mainly played on a $30 Teisco electric guitar that was already in poor condition and stopped playing it live since it would often break apart.[44] He additionally used Fender guitars such as a 1970s Stratocaster, a 1960s Mustang and a HSS Shawbucker Stratocaster, in which his live band were given 11 copies as a result of an endorsement deal with Fender.[45] His bass guitar mainly used for recording is a Teisco/Stagg bass.[45] He has used vintage Japanese synthesizers, including a Yamaha DX7 and a Korg Microsampler. Additional models included a Rhodes piano, a Moog Realistic MG-1, a Prophet 5, a Roland Juno 60, JX-3P, and a Yamaha DX100.[46] Amplifiers included a Roland JC-120, a 60-watt Fender Twin combo amp, and both a small Fender Vibro-Champ and a large Roland KC-550;  DeMarco used them during stage performances by hooking his keyboards with the vibro-champ amplifier which was linked to the KC-550.[47][45] Effect pedals used are a MXR Micro-Amp, a Boss CE-3 Chorus, TU-3 tuner, a Electro-Harmonix Holy Grail Reverb and a EHX Polyphonic Octave Generator. He records his music on reel-to-reel tape recorders, such as a Fostex A-8, a Tascam 334, an Alesis Micro Limiter and a Roland Space Echo RE-201.[45] He however recorded his album This Old Dog on a MacBook with an Apogee Quartet interface. He uses a Neumann U87 condenser mic, a Hoyer R-121 ribbon mic, and a four channel Neve Portico preamp strip with his Ableton setup. DeMarco also uses a Roland CR-78 drum machine for demos.[48]

Backing band members[edit]

Current members[49][50][51]

  • Joe McMurray - drums, occasional live vocals (2012–present)
  • Andrew Charles White - guitar, keyboards, percussion, backing vocals (2014–present)
  • Jon Lent - bass guitar (2016–present), keyboards, percussion (2015–2016)
  • Alec Meen - keyboards, backing vocals, percussion (2017–present)

Former members[52]

  • Peter Sagar (Homeshake) - guitar, keyboards, backing vocals (2012–2014)
  • Pierce McGarry - bass guitar, backing vocals (2012–2016)
  • Rory McCarthy - bass guitar (2016)

Discography[edit]

Studio albums

Mini LPs

Demos

  • 2 Demos (2012)
  • Salad Days Demos (2014)
  • Some Other Ones (2015)
  • Another (Demo) One (2016)
  • Old Dog Demos (2018)

With Makeout Videotape[edit]

Studio albums

  • Ying Yang (2010)

Extended plays (EPs)

  • Heat Wave (2009)
  • Eating Like A Kid (2010)
  • Bossa Yeye (2010)
  • Weird Meats EP (2010)

Compilations

  • Eyeballing (2010)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Lynch, Marley (February 21, 2013). "FYF 2013 artist spotlight: Mac DeMarco". Time Out. Retrieved August 4, 2014. 
  2. ^ Dearmore, Kelly (October 5, 2015). "Six Stellar Artist-Curated Festivals". Paste. Retrieved July 23, 2016. 
  3. ^ Mapes, Jillian (April 1, 2014). "Mac DeMarco is the Slacker With a Heart of Gold on the Endearing 'Salad Days'". Spin. Retrieved August 4, 2014. 
  4. ^ "Lo-fi master Mac DeMarco comes to Tel Aviv". timesofisrael.com. Retrieved 24 February 2017. 
  5. ^ Hood, Bryan. "VIDEO: An Interview with Lo-Fi Rocker Mac DeMarco". blouinartinfo.com. Archived from the original on 6 May 2017. Retrieved 6 May 2017. 
  6. ^ http://southernsouls.ca/mac-on-top/
  7. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jl2xoBg3bwg&t=238s
  8. ^ https://www.theguardian.com/music/2014/mar/22/mac-demarco-salad-days
  9. ^ "Brooklyn based Music Blog: Album Review : Mac DeMarco - 2 (Blue Wave)". Still in Rock. 2004-02-26. Retrieved 2015-08-13. 
  10. ^ Whelan, Alex. "Mac DeMarco's new record shines with its Montreal roots". Arizona Daily Wildcat. University of Arizona. Retrieved 24 November 2012. 
  11. ^ Lindsay, Cam. "Mac DeMarco". Exclaim.ca. Retrieved 24 November 2012. 
  12. ^ Pitchfork (2014-05-12), Mac DeMarco - Pepperoni Playboy (Documentary), retrieved 2017-12-07 
  13. ^ Hoby, Hermoine (March 22, 2014). "Mac DeMarco: 'I live like a scumbag, but it's cheap'". theguardian.com. Retrieved March 23, 2014. 
  14. ^ a b c Sharp, Elliott (October 29, 2013). "The Big Story: 2 Sketchy Days With Mac DeMarco". Red Bull. Archived from the original on 13 May 2017. Retrieved March 23, 2014. 
  15. ^ http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/edmontonjournal/obituary.aspx?pid=120210855
  16. ^ Marchand, Francois (1 November 2015). "A more sensitive Mac DeMarco returns home to Edmonton". Edmonton Journal. Retrieved 23 August 2016. 
  17. ^ a b c Thomas, Fred. "Biography". Mac DeMarco. Allmusic. Retrieved 24 November 2012. 
  18. ^ Fumano, Dan. "Makeout Videotape". Discorder. Archived from the original on 22 February 2014. Retrieved 12 December 2012. 
  19. ^ a b c d e Traynor, Cian. "Interview: Mac DeMarco". The Stool Pigeon. Archived from the original on 17 November 2012. Retrieved 24 November 2012. 
  20. ^ Kimbasha, Michelle. "Freaking Out The Neighbourhood: Mac DeMarco". Clashmusic.com. Retrieved 25 November 2012. 
  21. ^ "Signing // Mac DeMarco Signs To Captured Tracks". capturedtracks.com. Retrieved 27 September 2017. 
  22. ^ Hockley-Smith, Sam. "Mac DeMarco - 2". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved 24 November 2012. 
  23. ^ "Mac DeMarco: Rock and Roll Night Club EP | Album Reviews". Pitchfork. 2012-04-10. Retrieved 2015-08-13. 
  24. ^ Minsker, Evan. "Mac DeMarco Details New Album "Salad Days," Shares "Passing Out Pieces"". Pitchfork. Retrieved 22 January 2014. 
  25. ^ Hogan, Mark (April 1, 2014). "Mac DeMarco Salad Days". Pitchfork. 
  26. ^ "Arcade Fire, Drake, Shad make Polaris Music Prize short list | Entertainment & Showbiz from CTV News". Ctvnews.ca. 2014-07-15. Retrieved 2015-08-13. 
  27. ^ Minsker, Evan (March 1, 2014). "Mac DeMarco Announces 7" Subscription Series". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved March 2, 2014. 
  28. ^ "Mac DeMarco Performs "Let Her Go" on "Conan" | News". Pitchfork. 2015-03-31. Retrieved 2015-08-13. 
  29. ^ "Making Of Another One". YouTube. 2015-04-22. Retrieved 2015-08-13. 
  30. ^ "Mac DeMarco Explains His Mini-Album Of Love Songs, Track By Track". NPR.org. Retrieved 2015-10-19. 
  31. ^ "Mac DeMarco // The Way You'd Love Her (Official Single)". YouTube. 2015-05-11. Retrieved 2015-08-13. 
  32. ^ "Critic Reviews for Another One". Metacritic. Retrieved 2015-08-13. 
  33. ^ "NME News Mac DeMarco releases instrumental album 'Some Other Ones'". Nme.com. 2015-07-08. Retrieved 2015-08-13. 
  34. ^ Minsker, Evan (July 7, 2015). "Mac DeMarco Throwing Listening Party and BBQ in Brooklyn Tomorrow". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved July 20, 2015. 
  35. ^ Mr. Wavvy (19 August 2015). "Mac DeMarco Gives Social Insurance Number?". Youtube.com. Retrieved 5 May 2017 – via YouTube. 
  36. ^ "Best of 2015 : Best LPs - 20 to 1". Stillinrock.com. Retrieved 5 May 2017. 
  37. ^ "Mac DeMarco". Facebook.com. Retrieved 5 May 2017. 
  38. ^ "Watch Mac DeMarco Perform "This Old Dog" With Dogs | Pitchfork". Pitchfork.com. Retrieved 9 March 2017. 
  39. ^ "Mac DeMarco Chats, Performs "This Old Dog" on "Charlie Rose": Watch". Pitchfork.com. Retrieved 11 October 2017. 
  40. ^ "Mac DeMarco". CharlieRose.com. Retrieved 11 October 2017. 
  41. ^ Minsker, Evan. "Mac DeMarco". Guest Lists. Pitchfork Media. Retrieved 24 November 2012. 
  42. ^ [1][dead link]
  43. ^ "Pepperoni Playboy". imdb.com. Retrieved 27 September 2017. 
  44. ^ "The Editorial MagazineA Conversation with Mac Demarco - The Editorial Magazine". the-editorialmagazine.com. Retrieved 2018-05-16. 
  45. ^ a b c d "Gear Rundown: Mac DeMarco". Mixdown. Retrieved 2018-05-16. 
  46. ^ Stingray Music (2014-08-29), Mac Demarco describes his perfect woman and writing process @ Osheaga 2014, retrieved 2018-05-16 
  47. ^ "Mac DeMarco by Gary Canino - BOMB Magazine". bombmagazine.org. Retrieved 2018-05-16. 
  48. ^ "Mac DeMarco: Varispeed and Beyond". tapeop.com. Retrieved 2018-05-16. 
  49. ^ Minsker, Evan (25 November 2012). "Stream the New Cassette from Mac DeMarco's Other Band, Walter TV". Pitchfork. Archived from the original on 3 September 2015. Retrieved 6 September 2015. 
  50. ^ Nettle, Avery (7 November 2012). "We Interviewed Pierce McGarry, Bassist for Mac DeMarco, and Maker of Creepy Videos". Vice. Retrieved 6 September 2015. 
  51. ^ Coplan, Chris (12 September 2014). "Mac DeMarco covers Burt Bacharach's "This Guy's In Love With You" and introduces his new guitarist". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved 6 September 2015. 
  52. ^ Ambler, Charlie (20 November 2014). "Mac Demarco's Ex-Guitarist Makes Really Sexy Slacker Rock". Vice. Retrieved 6 September 2015. 

External links[edit]