Mark Schimick, the nationally renown mandolin player for Larry Keel and Natural bridge, was born in Chicago IL and grew up there and in Western North Carolina. In his youth he frequently visited his extended family in Southwestern Virginia (coincidentally, the same area where Larry’s family originates). Like Larry, Mark was exposed at an early age to the music of the Southern Appalachian Mountains by listening to the Stanley Brothers and Flatt and Scruggs on the radio. Starting for the age of 6, Mark pursued formal musical training in sacred choir singing and classical piano. Later he became a drummer in a variety of contemporary music bands. Mark has been playing the mandolin for 13 years, and has rapidly become one of the most versatile and fiery pickers on the acoustic music scene. Moreover, he has a clear and powerful singing voice that can range from high-lonesome to Beatles-esque to Motown-tinged soul. Mark has also been showcasing his talent around the country as a lead singer and drum; sometimes at the same time!