The Albany Theatre has launched its Spring Summer Season and kicking off the studioSOUNDS series on 6 March is homegrown talent, Mark Harrison.

Described at BBC Radio 2 as “quirky” and an artist who “makes you think afresh”, Mark’s appearances as a guest on Cerys Matthews’s and pick of the week on Anneka Rice’s radio shows have cemented his growing reputation as one of the UK’s most original musicians on the circuit.

And it all started in Coventry! Born and brought up in Styvechale, Mark attended Henry VIII and used to attend to gigs at The Lanch (Lanchester Polytechnic now Coventry University). It was whilst he was at school, he attended the Lanchester Arts Festival and was inspired by a lecture on the history of blues by Alexis Korner which sparked his lifelong interest in music. 

Mark taught himself to play guitar at school, formed bands and played in various venues in the city including alongside one his best friends, Jerry Dammers who then went on to form The Specials. The two still remain close. 

Hailing from a large family, Mark has maintained his friendships and close ties in the area admitting to being a “frequent frequenter of the pubs in Earlsdon – especially The Cottage and The Albany”.

The city features in many of his songs and on-stage stories and as Mark explains:

“I keep getting told my sense of humour on stage is 'wry and dry' but I regard it as perfectly normal for people from Cov! I’m really looking forward to being back there and performing in front of friends and families and introducing my music to new local audiences.”

With catchy tunes, lyrics than intrigue and engage and striking rhythms, his performances promise to make audiences smile, think and move. With elements of roots music, including folk, blues and gospel, Mark has created something new that is very much his own genre and each song is described as a snapshot of life with a story to tell - like a three-minute film or novel.

Described as a thrilling, rhythmic, finger-picker and slide player with a very distinctive style, Mark tours extensively and has appeared at top festivals such as Celtic Connections, Bearded Theory, The Great British Folk Festival, Lakefest and Jazz FM Love Supreme and at prestigious venues all over the UK. He has released six albums which have been unanimously acclaimed across a wide range of areas of the music world, receiving a very great deal of airplay and highly enthusiastic reviews in the UK, Europe and the US.

Tickets for this event are available from the theatre - £16 adult | £13 concession.  For further information about this and all other shows booking in the Spring|Summer Season, see online at www.albanytheatre.co.uk, call the box office on 02476 99 89 64 or visit in person at the theatre on Albany Road.