There Goes the Neighborhood
Boston area singer-songwriter Mark Stepakoff did not begin performing regularly until after his 40th birthday, but has been making up for lost time ever since, enjoying a growing reputation as one of the area's sharpest songwriting talents. His debut album, Amateur Hour, was released in 2002 before a packed house at Cambridge's Club Passim. Amateur Hour garnered considerable acclaim, hitting the top 30 on the national folk airplay charts and causing longtime Boston indi-music bible The Noise to dub Mark 'Boston's Biggest Songwriting Secret' as well as one of the city's '10 most underappreciated acts'. Now Mark has released his much anticipated second album, There Goes The Neighborhood, on which he is backed by such highly regarded musicians as Duke Levine, Mark Erelli and Jake Armerding. Mark is probably best known in the Boston area for his humorous material. He has received airplay on Dr. Demento's nationally syndicated radio program, and the Amateur Hour track 'Daniels, Walker & Beam' -- a simultaneous tribute to whiskey and financial planning -- won 1st Prize in 2003 in American Songwriter Magazine's national lyric contest. On his new CD, Mark's wry takes on subjects as diverse as barbecue sauce, General Gao's chicken, and actress Amanda Peet are sure to get plenty of laughs. But Mark's records contain real depth and variety, including several lovely ballads and straight ahead folk-rock; his new CD even includes a soulful tribute to blues great Mighty Sam McClain. Mark performs frequently in the Boston area, and has opened for such local luminaries as Don White, Kevin So, Geoff Bartley and the James Montgomery Band. Besides Club Passim, among the many local venues Mark has played are Cambridge's legendary Nameless Coffeehouse, the Burren and the Abbey Lounge.