Sometimes it takes a long while to find your own voice in songwriting. The practice of learning and performing other people’s songs can create the basis for your own original style. For some it takes longer than others. It did not happen quickly for Mark Reitenga but it seems he has reached a state of songwriting nirvana.
The singer and songwriter from Royal Oak, Michigan has been performing and perfecting his unique brand of folk rock for over 30 years throughout the local scene. Mark Reitenga has acted like a “human jukebox” playing a wide variety of styles at restaurants, clubs, and festivals. This eclectic set list allowed him to develop a songwriting range that is truly impressive.
The true catalyst for Mark Reitenga may have been a friendly songwriting competition with the music director at his church. The creative juices started flowing and songs started pouring out. Even more momentum was picked up when Mark grabbed nominations for Best Americana Artist and Songwriter at the Detroit Music Awards in 2015.
Mark Reitenga Lets You Deep Into His Emotions
Now the intimate vibe and storytelling ability is shared with the world on the debut EP by Mark Reitenga titled Unsung. The 4 track record released in January shows the broad spectrum of experiences coming together into one uncommon songwriting style.
The opener “The Detroit Blues” draws from Swing and classic ragtime blues with the help of a ukulele. Mark opens up with real emotion for his city in a time of educational and economic struggles. Even as a Blues song, there seems to be a hope in his voice. There is a more classic folk feel to “Are You Waiting?” There is real soul and emotion in both the lyrics and the finger-picking style that Mark Reitenga employs here.
The duality and range of Reitenga can really be scene on the last two tracks. “Angels Watching Over Me” has an elegant beauty that feels warm and cozy. Then “The Devil’s Train” heads into lively rockabilly territory with a powerful energy in the guitar and hyped up vocals. There may be a little dark edge on this track.
Dive in and have a listen at Mark’s BANDCAMP page.