Mark Newman, Must Be A Pony
Mark Newman - Must Be a PonyBarbara Fara
Music Incider Magazine
Best known as guitarist, mandolin player, and vocalist for band, Tao Jones, and their CD, Rorschach Sunset, Newman received industry-wide accolades. He's famous for his work playing in New York'sBleecker Street bars and clubs.
I want to know why Mark Newman wasn't invited to join G3 and Steve Vye. Maybe because he's too bluesy? He's too much a combination of Stevie Ray Vaughn and Wayne Allman.
Dead Man's Shoes (Written by Mark Newman)
The song people may take to be cynical. It's not cynical. If anything, his friend shouldn't have bought those dead man's shoes. And, now, I have to cut off my friendship with you. I don't want that curse of those dead man's shoes following me around. And now, I'll change my identity, move to a new country. You're not passing that curse onto me when you offer me those shoes.
What She Does To Me (Written by D. Carey)
This is wonderful. It's funny as hell. This reminds me of everybody, whether you're in a relationship with a man or a woman. And, your best friend is looking at the relationship from the outside, and he sees his friend being used. And yet, the lover of this woman will believe anything she tells him. His friends are telling him what a fake she is. But, to me, when I hear this, it's like Love Potion No. 9. He's stuck on her and won't let her go. He'll put up with it until the end. There is a lesson to this. Every one must learn their mistakes in love and in life.
Must Be A Pony (Written by Mark Newman; Naomi Margolin on backup vocals)
The title track is a great song. It's very bluesy. Here we go again. He's a true bluesman at heart. And, backup singer Namoi Margolin, does a beautiful job on this track. The song is about re-starting his life. He has been through hell and back. And, the one person he's counting on to be there won't give him an answer at all. Will she be there or not? So, he keeps digging deeper to find out what he did wrong in that relationship. And, all he wants to know in the end, once he's found himself – will she be there? There's nothing but love in the air when it comes to her.
The pony part must be his animal totem. Good God. I will find out the meaning of a pony in his totem if he needs. I have a book about animal totems. As soon as I look it up, I'll include it here. But, I honestly believe, this horse is trying to help him find himself by pointing out his mistakes. (If you look at the occult, horses are scared of witches.) But yet, horses can sense danger. This horse is trying to guide Mark in the right direction. That horse will get him there. And, that woman will be waiting for him.
Hard In The Rain (Written by D. Samudio and Mark Newman)
The character is stuck at the crossroads. He's broken hearted and he's crying. It's raining on the outside and in his heart. He's trying to find his way back to where he started from. This would be something Robbie Johnson would record, but it seems to me that he is trying to reconcile with his past. He needs to start living in the present. If she really wanted him, she would've taken him back.
Mean Season (Lucille Lucille) (Written by Mark Newman)
The character in this song has finally learned his lesson. He meets a young woman who takes him for his house, his money, everything. Lucille pretends she loves him, and he finally realizes he's being used. He tells her he needs the truth. As much as she could apologize, he won't take her back. He'll make sure everyone knows her game, so that nobody else will be her fool.
God For Sale (Written by Mark Newman)
This is a great tribute to all the evangelical television preachers from Jimmy Swaggert to the late Jerry Fallwell and everybody who's selling God. There are those lonely souls out there who believe that if they make their donations to Pat Robertson they will go to Heaven. Instead of seeking a doctor's help for their loneliness, sadness and depression, they sit up late at night with their credit cards. They receive their free gift for their donation of $50. But, the evangelists are money-making junkies, taking advantage of the poor and hungry. That last $50 could be their grocery money for their families. And yet, they believe that if they call the 800-number, they'll get right into the gates of heaven. Yet, you can talk to God no matter where you are. It doesn't matter if you're on the toilet, or in the kitchen cooking dinner. God is everywhere. So, if you're really that lonely and depressed, seek medical help. And, if you can't find anything on tv except these evangelists, turn on TNT and you can instead watch Alias all night long. Read a book, journal, or take a bath. Figure out why you're so stressed out and depressed. Help yourself, instead of helping these men built glass castles that touch the sky. I think it's pretty sad the Jim Bakker's son is doing it now, except as a punk rock preacher. He's starting a church in NY because his wife got into NYU. His plate goes around at every service.
Pull yourself out of your own hole. Because, God is not for sale. God is everywhere.
Mambo Dancing (Written by Mark Newman)
The character in the song goes on vacation and falls in love with this mambo dancer. The one thing he loves is that stability is in her life and in her dancing. She wants to be a professional dancer. He remembers how he fell in love with her when she danced with her. He wishes she would fall in love with her. He remembers her in his mind.
Little One (Written by V. Poag)
This is a cross-over song that can go from R&B to country. This is a song about a father talking to his daughter and telling her it is ok to make mistakes while pursuing her dreams. While we all fall down and make mistakes, we dust ourselves off and get up again. This is a wonderful song for a wedding when the father and daughter dance together. It will bring tears to both their eyes because their loving memories will be remembered in their tears of happiness and joy. In her eyes, she's a woman. In his eyes, she'll always be a little one.
So, So Cynical (Written by Mark Newman)
Here we go again. He's got that Stevie Ray Vaughn, Muddy Waters and B.B. King effect on guitar. "I used to love her but I'm so, so cynical now," says it all for this song. So many male musicians are writing songs about being used. Sign me up for one of these men, please.
This poor guy in this whole album keeps picking up users. He gets a woman who takes over his life, his bank accounts and just uses him. If he wants a night out with the boys, he can't have it. But, if she wants a night out with the girls, she gets it, because she's wearing the pants in the family. She played it so good that at first he was allowed to wear the pants. Then, she turned the tables, and started using him.
He doesn't know her anymore. Everything that comes out of her mouth could be a lie. So, he's leaving and he's not taking it anymore. Here we go again, we don't choose our partners by their outside. You choose them by what's on the inside. And, you don't control your partner whether it's at the onset or outset, because the other can give you retribution. Whoever was the abuser in the last relationship, they will be the victim in their next relationship and will be used.
New York Mining Disaster, 1941 (Written by The Bee Gees Barry Gibb and Robin Gibb)
Mark Newman does a wonderful job on the Bee Gees song written by Barry and Robin Gibb. The New York Mining Disaster, 1941 actually is loosely based on the Aberfan mining disaster in Wales. But what the Bee Gees did was change it to New York for their first American release.
You have this miner waiting to be rescued from a cave-in. He talks to this other guy and tells him to care for his wife until he gets back. Mr. Jones is rescued, and the trapped miner gave him permission to take care of his family to help them get through the tough times. He never returns and dies, and he's made his last wishes known to Mr. Jones. Nonetheless, he hopes to be rescued and reunited with his family. The man in the mine never comes home.
While Mr. Jones is telling everybody, "Shh, we don't want another landslide or collapse. We don't want to lose anyone else," while wives and children are losing their minds, all Mr. Jones can think about is what his best friend asked of him.
A love In Vain (Written by M. Montalbo and Mark Newman)
This song reminds me of a local musician here in Atlanta. He will remain unnamed, but I will make sure he hears this record. This one song out of the whole album is truly about addictions and how love can be an addiction and when that love ends people turn to other habits to cover that pain. It could be alcohol or drugs they turn to while they try to get that lover back. Their friends warn them about the relationship. And here we go again, he gets burned. Everything he's done for her has been in vain and turned him into an addict of love and alcohol. And, his friends were right about her. That's hard to do when you've given your whole heart and soul. And, she leaves you for someone else or just for freedom. Take your time with relationship. If you can build friendship, communication and trust without sex first, you can make sure you're compatible with the loved one. And, you won't get burned in the end.
Wanda (Written by D. Samudio and J. Bubenik)
That guitar playing is magnificent. The man knows what he's doing on that guitar. Out of every guitarist I've ever heard from Steve Vye to Stevie Ray Vaughn, nobody can play like Mark Newman except Stevie Ray Vaughn. Where Stevie Ray Vaughn did it all bluesy, Mark Newman does it with a little classical in it.
Let Wanda go, man. You're not gonna get her back, no matter what you do. He reminds us of this anonymous musician who wants the girl who's gonna marry someone else. No matter what he does, she won't take him back. Wanda's the same way. She's been honest with him.
He's trying to tell her that if she comes back he'll tell her everything. Wanda, meanwhile, thinks if he doesn't just admit his truth with her now, she will leave him forever.
Love Won't Ever Pass This Way Again (Written by Mark Newman)
This song is not about a relationship. It's about a legal separation. It's about a couple that's been married 5-10 years. After all these years of loving friendship and kindness and giving, she realizes she needs some space. He won't give her the space, so she files for a legal separation. It breaks his heart so much that he can't imagine being in another relationship again. All he wanted were answers. And if he got those answers, maybe the marriage could've been saved. He walks the streets of Manhattan, and he remembers all their happy memories. All she says is that it's the past, and it won't happen again. He hopes she'll call and beg for him back. And yet, he doesn't really want that. He knows he'll have to grow and become stronger to get over this horrible ride.
Going Underground (Written by Mark Newman)
This is a great song. Mark Newman can really play that mandolin. He picks that sucker like it's a banjo. And, I know he's a multi-talented artist, and he shows it in this song. Going Underground should've been the first single off this album to be released on air. What is he hiding from? One minute he tells his lover he's hiding and not to tell anyone. Then he realizes he'll get lonely, so he invites her along. She doesn't understand why he's going into hiding. Maybe it's to heal his past wounds, past scars, and past heartbreaks. Or, maybe he just did a serious crime and has to hide for 10 years. Or, maybe he hasn't paid his taxes in the past 5 years and the I.R.S is onto him. And, he can't tell her the truth. And, in the meantime, she loves him and can tell him anything and he listens and understands. And, he should be able to do the same with her. He should just tell her the truth why he has to go into hiding. Maybe their relationship will blossom more if he just shares the truth with her.
The album is a masterpiece and the 2008 Grammy for R&B should go to Mark Newman and his band and Naomi (his backup singer) because he has put all of his heart and soul into this piece of work. Naomi reminds me of a young Linda Ronstadt and he should keep her as part of the ensemble. Do me a favor, Mark, don't go underground for too long. I'll be waiting to hear from you again very soon, my little Stevie Ray Vaughn. You are gifted and a great talent. When God puts someone on the earth with gifts like this, that is what you call a true musician. It's a person who loves what he does like what Steve Vye or Yngwie Malmsteen. Mark Newman is a class act and I'm surprised by the work he's created. It's his style of playing.
Mark Newman is an original and Must Be A Pony is a concert I would spend the money on. Be sure to see him in concert too.