Born and raised in Belfast, Northern Ireland, Dave Marks’ musical journey began with him spending his teens playing electric guitar and bass guitar in a number of local bands, before moving to London to study at the Guitar Institute and Basstech.
Immersed in a deep, rich musical environment, he began playing a wealth of other instruments, including drums and percussion, key, banjo and the Irish whistle. Upon completing his studies, untethered listening habits led him to seek out chances to perform and collaborate in almost every genre that he could break into.
At only 22, this included touring with Prog-rock drum legend Carl Palmer and playing Jazz-fusion gigs with world-renowned arranger Richard Niles. From there, he also began to explore composition, production and recording and for the next eight years, would teach, lecture, mentor and deliver masterclasses across a variety of courses at Diploma, Degree and Masters level at the Institute of Contemporary Music Performance, Thames Valley University, The London College of Music and Media, International Guitar Foundation, University of Cheltenham, South West Music Schools and many more. He also became a writer for Bass Guitar Magazine, starting out doing gear reviews, then interviewing (including a wide variety of front cover artists) and finally writing his own column for many years.
In the years since, Dave has honed his skills by constantly placing himself in challenging musical situations – whether those are joining bands at short notice in emergency situations (usually about three days notice to learn a two hour show and join a tour) or working with wildly different artists and jumping between the disciplines of Jazz improvisation, scored music and songwriter support playing. All of these experiences have led to him becoming one of the UK’s top bass players and a versatile musician with a wide-ranging skillset.
Currently working as a freelance multi-instrumentalist, producer, arranger and engineer, over the last twenty years Dave has toured, gigged, recorded and guested with the likes of; Hans Zimmer, Robert Plant, Rick Parfitt, Carl Palmer, Don Airey, Mel C, Hurts, Paul Young, Wishbone Ash, Paul Gilbert (Mr Big), Larry Carlton, Martin Fry (ABC), The Drifters, Lou Gramm (Foreigner), Simon McBride, Jo Harman, Belinda Carlisle, Bonnie Tyler, Carol Decker (T’Pau), Nik Kershaw, Odyssey, Kim Wilde, Nick Hayward (Haircut 100), Pete Cox (Go West), Jason Donovan, Les McKeown (Bay City Rollers), Nick Van Eede (Cutting Crew), The Real Thing, Rick Parfitt Jr, Ola Onabule, Stanton Moore, Kirk Fletcher, Denny Illet, Dusty Ciggaar, Boo Hewerdine, Paul Carrack, D:Ream and many more.
Dave proudly endorses EBS amps and pedals and Elixir strings.
RICK PARFITT JR
Dave is also a versatile multi-instrumentalist, composer, producer, arranger, engineer and mixer. An experienced studio musician, he has worked on both sides of the glass, bringing musicality and a wide-ranging skill set to all of the sessions that he’s been involved in.
Dave has written extensively for Bass Guitar Magazine, starting as a gear reviewer, before moving on to interviews (including quite a few cover features) and eventually establishing a long running series of monthly columns, covering technique, styles and melodic bass playing.
He has also worked as an educator for many years, teaching, delivering masterclasses and writing courses at diploma, degree and Masters levels in a number of internationally respected institutions including:
- The Guitar Institute
- Guitar X
- The Academy of Music and Sound
- Thames Valley University
- London College of Music and Media
- University of Chichester
- The International Guitar Foundation