Entertainment Now


entertainment now magazine

  • Article Title

  • Magazine

  • Country

  • Date

  • Pages

  • The few, the brave, the 12-string bassist

  • Entertainment Now

  • USA

  • December 20, 2001

  • 8-9


Entertainment Now is a local arts and music magazine published weekly in Bigfork, Montana. After I won the ‘Player of the Month’ award from the now-defunct dot-com 12-string bass website, the publisher of Entertainment Now, The Bigfork Eagle, did a feature article about me, a “local boy does good” sort of thing. Not only did I share the front cover with jazz singer Eden Atwood (YUM!), but I also got two pages and a color photo in the center of the magazine. I guess this means that I have been a centerfold, woo hoo! lol

This photo by Brett Butterstein was taken near Bigfork, Montana on the shore of Flathead Lake, one of the largest freshwater lakes west of the Mississippi River. Between the storm clouds heading towards us over the mountains and the waves on the lake shore, we couldn’t have asked for a more dramatic background that day!

I provided the reporter with a press release but they still got a few details wrong; Hey, it happens. Here are the parts of the article that are relevant to the 12-string bass:

For the past 25 years Mark Rowe has been on a musical odyssey and his discovery of the seldom played 12-string bass has brought him international acclaim. Rowe recently won the ‘Player of the Month’ award from the 12-string bass internet web site. The site is the only one of its kind devoted to the 12-string bass guitar and has a worldwide audience. Only a small number of 12-string basses are made a year by Hamer, and Rowe is the only one who plays it fretless.

Two years ago Rowe had his 12-string bass custom-made. To his knowledge, it is the only fretless 12-string bass Hamer has ever produced. “Fortunately I have a lot of experience playing fretless basses, otherwise it would be a real problem to keep it in tune,” said Rowe. “If your fingers aren’t in exactly the right positions all the time, particularly with multiple strings being played, it can really sound bad.”

Rowe’s style of playing was noted in the London Daily Mirror, National Enquirer, Star, and Globe after he played at a dance attended by Prince William of England. Rowe says his greatest influences are Tom Petersson and King’s X bassist Doug Pinnick. “These two guys are considered to be the top two 12-string bassists in the world,” said Rowe. “To be recognized among them in an international forum among my peers is totally amazing.”