Mark will be playing Pender Blues Fest this June, 2024



Mark ‘Fatneck’ Petersen grew up in Vancouver, far away from the sounds of American Blues. But at 18, Mark took his hard-earned summer savings and bought an electric guitar. Finally giving into his desire to learn Stevie Ray Vaughan’s live recording of “Flood Down in Texas” from an Atlantic Blues compilation cassette he couldn’t stop listening to… that was the beginning.

Gravitating towards electric blues, Mark spent much of his twenties at Vancouver’s famous blues club, The Yale. Inspired by the likes of Stevie Ray, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Hollywood Fats, Clapton and the Red Devils….as well as learning from local blues hero Jack Lavin and the unbelievable Yale house band during the early/mid nineties (Tim Hearsey, Jerry Adolphe, Dave Vidal, Chris Nordquist, Mike Kilanj) On top of that Lavin constantly introduced Mark to many blues legends – Pinetop Perkins, John Hammond Jr., Cash McCall. Lavin’s generosity fueled Petersen’s blues chops that eventually gained him the nickname “Fatneck” … for the earnest licks he delivered from his custom big-necked guitars along with his surprisingly throaty vocals. “I was the scrawny kid from the suburbs….. with the baseball-bat necks,” he muses, “and I belt it!”

Petersen’s musical journey continued from the Yale to his fronting Threesixty, his first rock trio, which released a self-titled debut EP that brought attention to his voice and songwriting skills with the lead track “The Leading Brand” – garnering him second place in the CFOX Seeds contest and a ‘Best Vocalist’ award.

Mark has since released 5 albums as well as the single/video “Too Late,” which features Doug Elliott (ODDS), Pat Steward (Bryan Adams), Geoff Hicks (Colin James) and Mike Kenney (Canucks + Modelos). ‘Too Late’ has also become the number one requested YouTube video from his son! Many gigs in Vancouver over the years and touring with bands ranging from traditional blues acts like Harpdog Brown, to full rock shows including Econoline Crush and more recently Limblifter.

Mark’s discography:

  • Threesixty (1998)
  • Lost and Found (2004) SidewalkRain (2011)
  • Too Late (2016) single + video Islands (2017)
  • Hot Tin Lid (2020)

Petersen’s voice sounds metallic; that gives him an imploring quality, but plays his blues with a raw edge and in a diversity of styles; that gives him an immediacy that flashier guitarists seem to lack.

Tom Harrison, The Province