WORDS BY
Jacqui James

I FEEL EXTREMELY privileged to be able to interview artists and bands from all around the world. It’s what I love. Afterall when you love what you do it makes those challenging days easier.

I still can remember the very first time my family, a friend and I first met Diesel aka Mark Lizotte! I was 15 and we were at Croydon Festival where Diesel was performing. Towards the end of his set my Mum, friend and I were getting crushed and were getting crushed against the barriers. At that stage Mum was helping me to stand because sitting in my wheelchair I simply couldn’t see. The security guards saw us and lifted me and Mum over the barriers, then surprisingly lifted my electric wheelchair over!

Then before we know it, we all ended up in Diesel’s tent! My friend and I almost died (afterall we had the biggest crush on “Deez”). When we entered the tent and seeing Diesel standing there, I can remember thinking “is this a dream?” I didn’t have an electronic portable communication system that day; all I had was an alphabet board to spell sentences out. He patiently waited for me to spell out what I wanted to say, so Diesel was probably the first stranger to treat me “normally” and I still can remember this amazing feeling.

Twentysomething years later I find myself pinching myself to think I’m a music journalist, interviewing some artists and bands I’ve loved for years and years! As you would know by now, Diesel is my favourite to interview. He’s down-to-earth, extremely talented and artistic and always working on various projects and is always is touring the country constantly.

Diesel is currently doing gigs part of his Lit It Up tour. However, he made time for me for my last interview for 2014!

G’day Mark! How are you? Thanks for your ongoing support of Gigs ‘n Interviews over the years. It’s always a pleasure to interview you!

The pleasure is mine!

Looking at all your gig dates this year, I think to myself how do you do it? You must have some secret to well-being?

I wish! I guess I’ve come to know what’s going to help me and what’s going to hinder me on the road, ultimately the shows are my focus and they certainly can be exhausting as adrenalin is what I’m going on.

Over the years to me, you’ve come out of your shell, even meeting Russell Crowe at the GQ Men Of The Year Awards 2013. Do you think once you get to a certain age you feel more comfortable in your position or do you think of being an artist differently?

I think I have to some degree “grown in to my skin”, being basically born a shy person, the whole extravert thing that people seem to expect from a performer is definitely not me (except when given a guitar!)

What was it like to meet the great artist Gurrumul last year?

It was great! Some people just have a beautiful energy.

I love the photos on your Instagram from your touring. It seems like you have developed an eye for rustic beauty?

I think I’ve always had a fascination with what the hands of time do to things, it’s a real reminder of impermanence.

Listening to Barnesy’s latest album, I noticed the production was very stripped back with an organic sound. Was this one of your influences?

In regards to the track I was involved with definitely, I’ve always loved that song and it was great to give “my” treatment. Jimmy was very trusting with letting “do my thing”.

Being a father of a daughter and a son, you must get forced to listen to various genres. (I have a much younger sister and brother, so I know what some youngens listen to) Do you find yourself picking apart some songs and extracting parts to use in live shows?

I grew up in a family of nine with me being the youngest, I had so much music around to feed off of, I’ve really appreciated being around my kids and listening to what they are discovering, which of course ends up making its way into my music.

Congratulations on your involvement in the Milton Ulladulla Relay for Life. That’s awesome and so very kind of you to lend your time. How important is using your “fame” for raising awareness of causes to you?

That was a cool day! I really enjoyed “gate crashing” the event, everyone was so appreciative, it’s rare that I’m ever in one place for long enough to do such a thing but the planets lined up that day!

Are you just focusing on touring or can we expect a new album in the near future?

I’m busy working on three different projects at present, writing and producing tracks for other artists but I hope to be starting a project of new material in 2015.

Lit It Up Tour Dates:

Sat 08 Nov Wollongong, NSW Illawarra Performing Arts Centre with Frank Sultana Buy
Sun 09 Nov Werribee, VIC Werribee Park plus many more Buy
Sat 15 Nov Kincumber, NSW Lizotte’s Central Coast with Tegan Wiseman Sold Out
Sun 16 Nov Kincumber, NSW Lizotte’s Central Coast with Tegan Wiseman Buy
Fri 21 Nov Lambton, NSW Lizotte’s Newcastle with Kim Wempe Buy
Sat 22 Nov Lambton, NSW Lizotte’s Newcastle with Kim Wempe Buy
Fri 28 Nov Sydney NSW Lizotte’s Sydney with Tom & Dom Buy
Sat 29 Nov Sydney NSW Lizotte’s Sydney with Tom & Dom Buy
Fri 05 Dec Kincumber, NSW Lizotte’s Central Coast with Tim Chaisson Buy
Sat 06 Dec Kincumber, NSW Lizotte’s Central Coast with Tim Chaisson Sold Out
Fri 12 Dec Lambton, NSW Lizotte’s Newcastle with Owen Campbell Buy
Sat 13 Dec Lambton, NSW Lizotte’s Newcastle with Owen Campbell Buy
Sat 03 Jan Mulwala, NSW Mulwala Waterski Club plus many more Buy
Sun 11 Jan Mornington, VIC Mornington Racecourse plus many more Buy
Sat 17 Jan Mannum, SA Mary Ann Reserve plus many more Buy
Sat 24 Jan Busselton, WA Barnard Park plus many more Buy
Sun 25 Jan Red Hill, WA Red Hill Auditorium plus many more Buy
Mon 26 Jan McLaren Vale, SA Serafino plus many more Buy
Fri 13 Feb Echuca, VIC Aquatic Reserve plus many more Buy
Sat 07 Mar Jacobs Well, QLD Harrigan’s Drift Inn plus many more Buy
Sat 14 Mar Ballarat, VIC North Gardens plus many more Buy

 

Diesel’s Links:

www.facebook.com/officialdieselmusic

www.dieselmusic.com.au/

http://instagram.com/diesel_music

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