Shawndell Marks

Shawndell Marks

 Reedsburg, Wisconsin, USA
BandAlternativeSinger/Songwriter

Together with her band, Shawndell Marks fuses blues, jazz and rock influences with intensely emotional lyrics to call her music soul rock, created to move your body and speak to your soul. She weaves beauty and grace with raw emotion.

Biography

When Shawndell Marks takes the stage, people straighten up and take notice. The little red stilettos, mane of huge hair and red keyboard sitting atop a grand piano being played with delicate drama demands attention. Sweet, addictive melodies sung with a surprisingly big voice. The performances have been described as mesmerizing, stunning, sparkly. Quite a bit of fiery power for such a little lady.
Marks studied music at the University of Wisconsin then went on to perform with the cover band Thunder Road for several years, opening for acts such as George Jones, Blackhawk and The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. Now she’s on her own experimenting with electronic sounds, honing her intuitive songwriting skill, further developing her original vocal chops. Some say she’s an edgier Norah Jones. Others hear a tinge of Stevie Nicks. Whatever it is, there’s no denying the magical way she conveys deep emotion while staying down to earth. Together with her band she fuses piano pop with dignified musicianship--a sound musicians and music fans alike can relate with.
In 2005 a collection of songs entitled Remnants of Crazy was created, a personal project to help process the traumatic death of her father. Now in 2011, one of two full-length albums with all new material has been released - a simple piano/vocal venture, Little Things. The second is in the works - a more produced collaboration with her band mates, working title Food for the Beast.
Marks resides in Small Town, Wisconsin with her husband, children, and collection of red shoes.

Al Buttner, Drummer --- Buttner began drumming on cardboard boxes while listening to the Beatles, and has been honing his skill ever since. He has played and recorded with several bands including Anxious Edge, ShoDown and Thunder Road.

Chris Mittlesteadt, Guitarist, Violinist --- Mittlesteadt studied music at the University of Wisconsin and the Musician’s Institute in Los Angeles, under the influence of guitar masters Robin Ford and Eric Johnson. He has recorded and produced Marks’ material as well as Travis Cooper, ShoDown, and Thunder Road. He has run the successful sound company Peak Systems Group for 10 years and just recently devoted more time to family and studio.

Joe McCloskey, Bassist --- “Uncle Joe” McCloskey’s combination of charisma with raw talent is obvious. He has done musical arranging, recording and touring with acts such as QuickShot, Jon Nicholson, Big Brother Billy, and The Rowdy Prairie Dogs. He lives in Madison, Wisconsin.

Paul Isaacs, Keyboards --- Hailing from London, Paul's interest in music was apparent early on, mainly percussion (toy rattles) and Robert Plant style screaming vocals to attract his parents' attention. At age 11 he took up the piano and trumpet and also developed an interest in composing. Years later, after completing a Music and Physics degree, Paul played keyboards/trumpet and wrote music for various London-based bands ranging in style from progressive rock, R&B and jazz funk to electro pop. By assimilating and blending these styles in not necessarily equal measures, Paul, whilst with the New Zealand-based band, Scenic Drive, developed his own, sometimes quirky, but always melodic, harmonically lush and rhythmic style. In 2008, Paul emmigrated to the US, but forgot to pack his enthusiasm for music. A random meeting with the talented Shawni and her band re-ignited his musical flame and he subsequently joined them as keyboardist. The rest is . . . well watch this space . . .

Discography

Remnants of Crazy (2005)
1. Remnants of Crazy
2. Passion
3. Ready to Forgive
4. Livin Your Life
5. What You Do
6. Lonely Alone
7. I Don't Need
8. Hiding Behind
9. Into the River
10. If He Were Here
11. Remnants of Crazy - Acoustic

Little Things (2011)
1. Marty's Tune
2. Loved Like That
3. Risky
4. Into The River
5. Not My Father
6. Between Doubt and Faith
7. Livin Your Life
8. Over The Rainbow

Set List

We do a tasteful combination of familiar standards in a loose jazz style and also play several original pieces, which are piano/vocal-driven soul-rock type songs. (Think Norah Jones meets Fleetwood Mac.) A sophisticated flavor all ages can enjoy.