Mick Karn


Mick Karn is a Cyprus-born UK bass player that consistently delivers exotic rhythms, melodies and unabashed originality.  Mick's playing has always been a strong influence in my musical thought and ultimately in my selection a Wal bass guitar.

Special note: After battling cancer for several months in 2010, Mick Karn passed away on January 4th, 2011.  He was singular artist and will be missed.


Mick Karn - Titles (1982)


I was fortunate enough to have seen Mick Karn perform at the Palace in Los Angeles in 1988 while he was on tour with Mark Isham for the Castalia album.  It's was a memorable experience for a formidable 19 year-old; a seat-of-the pants drive to LA to see the show, with Gino driving at break-neck speeds and Dino riding shotgun (the names have not been changed to protect the innocent).  A requisite stop at Gino's favorite traditional Iranian restaurant, to eat extremely spicy food with our hands (as it should be) sets us up for the evening's entertainment.

During the sound check at the Palace, I let myself in to the hall, toting my 'inconspicuous' LP Record copy of "Titles," seeking Mick's autograph.  He was very personable and spoke with me for a few minutes after signing the LP cover.  Quite a sublime experience!

By my good fortune, I later ran into one of the Warner Brothers/Virgin representatives that I knew at the show and was able to finagle a back stage pass:



This night couldn't get any better!  The only problem now was choosing whether to take Dino or Gino to the party after the show.  Dino came with me and Gino talked his way in (his day job was selling used cars).  As of October 6, 1988, this was by far the best party I had ever been to!  Stereotypical Hollywood scene, but very cool by my 19 year old standards!

The best part is that the entire band was hanging out at the reception and each was equally as gracious as Mick, signing my copy of the program:



Mark Isham

Mick Karn

Terry Bozzio

David Torn

David Goldblatt

Kurt Wortman


Not bad for an evening's work.  The show itself was of course extraordinary.  The group's musicianship and professionalism on and off of the stage, left a lasting impression on me.  A memorable example was when one of Mick's gorgeous Wal basses fell off of it's stand during a performance and crashed to the floor.  Mick saw this, and with only a slightly worried look, continued to play without missing a note.  I imagine that I would have stopped the show to retrieve the instrument and inspect it for damage!  This is probably why I have a day job...


Related Links:

Mick Karn official website:

Interview with Mick Karn by Anil Prassid:

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This page created on: 11/20/2010 13:23:21 - updated: 3/23/2015 22:22:14.
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