Mark Andrew

Ear to the Ground Review

Posted by on Mar 24, 2014

I tend not to feature artists without a specific latest release, but Mark Andrew Pudas intrigued me from the time I first heard him. It’s almost cliché in the “business” to say that some people have “it” and some others don’t. Pudas has it. It’s a style and something special that makes him transcend typical descriptions. It’s easy to say he sounds like this great blues artists or that rock hall member, but the greatest compliment to him is that he’s an artist in his own right. Here’s why. Take a listen to “Not Cold, But Broken” a clear cut blues tune. The full band fills around a distinctive just-raspy-enough vocal that has a lot of attitude. But then, just when the listener thinks he’s the standard blues man, there’s a softer, gentler side to the vocal performance. He doesn’t just sing with his vocal chords; he sings with his heart. That’s the “it” factor where I sit. This guy has “it” in spades.   Learn how to place music on itunes at “Ooh Eeh” is onomatopoeiaic title of a feel good love song. Complete with hand claps and female harmonies, the track has a simple structure and message. Several of the lyrics are almost scat, but the primary lyric “ooh eeh… come with me across the deep blue sea” is about that young love ambition that just wants to elope. This track just begs to be attached to a film or TV show. It’s infectious. “Murphy’s Harp” is a darker tale of love, loss, and seeking. It has a blues-influenced country sound that is captivating. Some of the guitar work is intricate, conjuring images of lonely dark places. Pudas uses his highly emotive voice to shape a different character altogether. While some artists that attempt this Renaissance Man approach to music (usually unsuccessfully) there’s a stale mimicry evident in their work, but Pudas seems to really be reflecting his heartfelt songwriting. His variety of influences come through almost by necessity. The last track on this short ReverbNation teaser is “Sunshine,” and by far my favorite. This is Pudas at his best. It’s country charm, killer blues-based guitar work, and some classic Americana attitude. “After the rain comes… the sun shines.” It’s the kind of song that can help people get through a rough stage of life, but also help folks in a good place have nostalgia for the good...

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SouthWest Metro Magazine Cover

Posted by on Oct 28, 2013

Eden Prairie’s Mark Andrew Pudas left “The Voice” early last season, but he hasn’t left the local music scene. The Twin Cities music scene nurtures an abundance of notable talent. In the mix, some local performers, like Eden Prairie’s own Mark Andrew Pudas, break through with a rare opportunity to sing in front of a huge television audience on a popular singing competition show. Pudas displayed his talent to music lovers nationwide as a contestant on the fourth season of NBC’s hit show The Voice which concluded in June.  Now back home in Minnesota after losing in a battle round performance on April 16, Pudas continues his musical journey with studio recording and performing near his hometown stomping grounds. The singer grew up in Eden Prairie and attended Eden Prairie High School, where his mother worked for 37 years as a physical education teacher. He jokes about always getting A’s in gym class and says his musical genes come from his father’s side of the family. His grandfather sang in church choirs. His father performed in military bands, and his brother Matt is also a musician. “Matt is six years older, and I’ve always looked up to him,” Pudas says. “I even played with his group, the White Iron Band, for a while.” As a teenager, Pudas practiced his guitar five hours a day. He performed with high school bands and, unlike many teens unsure which career track to choose, Pudas knew music would be his path. “I didn’t want to do anything else,” he says. Well, except maybe work for the family business, Pudas Landscaping and Construction. “Working as a landscaper gives me the flexibility to leave early for a gig,” he admits. “It’s also another creative outlet I enjoy.” Pudas’s creativity is apparent in his singing, guitar playing and song writing. His musical style is grounded in rootsy Americana, evident in the 10 tracks he wrote for his self-titled album, Mark Andrew. “I like to explore all musical styles,” he says. “I’ve been influenced by bands like Pink Floyd and Fitz and The Tantrums, and solo artists like Ryan Adams. Music with a bluesy feel is where I’m most comfortable.” His poetic songs tell stories of people he’s known or of shared human experiences like romance or working through awkward phases of life. The track “Sunshine” on his self-titled album is about a homeless friend who hitchhiked across...

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