It's been six years since Money Mark's last album, but that doesn't mean the man hasn't been busy.
It's been six years since Money Mark's last album, but that doesn't mean the man hasn't been busy. "I have my whole studio set up right next to my bed. I roll out, and it's always right there," the keyboardist/producer tells Billboard.com. "I'm making little demos, or working on scores, or dabbling in photography. I'm always working on something."
"Brand New by Tomorrow," the follow-up to 2001's "Change is Coming" (Emperor Norton), has been consuming Mark of late. The set is due Feb. 20 via Brushfire records, his first for the Jack Johnson imprint.
The new pop-inflected release comes on the heels of a tumultuous time in the artist's life, both for his personal relationships and in coping with a national disaster.
"After 9-11, things started crumbling for me. But I knew I had to come out of this with something, a hopeful attitude, maybe," he says, explaining the origins of the album title. "That's why there's some seriously bummed-out material on there. My output resembles my input. Putting out a record is like making a soundtrack of my life." The artist is planning a tour in support of the new album, which will include a stop at the South by Southwest Music Festival in Austin, Texas.
Money Mark, whose real name is Mark Ramos-Nishita, has been spending time in the Beastie Boys' Oscilloscope Laboratories studios in New York over the last few months, though he's scant on the details about any impending album from the trio, with whom he has collaborated for years. "I'm not sure when to expect anything from them. You'll probably know before I do," he admits.
The group is playing a handful of shows in Australia and Singapore this month, as well as a pair of performances in Germany in June. "We'll have a big rehearsal in Melbourne and I imagine we'll be working on writing and playing some new material there," Money Mark says.