A blazing guitarist, an evocative vocalist and a songwriter steeped in authenticity: At the crossroads of country music and rock and roll is where Mark Mackay makes his stand. Fronting a powerhouse band, he rocks the room with rowdy charm and persuasive conviction.
From Hollywood to Nashville with multiple stops in Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming — in a recent 12-month period Mark played 230 shows, headlining festivals, concerts and clubs and opening for country stars like Frankie Ballard, Eli Young Band, Cole Swindell, Tracy Lawrence and Old Dominion, plus legendary rockers The Marshall Tucker Band, 38 Special, Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi) and Orianthi. Forthcoming new destinations include South Dakota and Illinois. “The more we keep pushing the more it opens up,” says Mark of his expanding touring territories.
The Shops at Heavenly Village will host free outdoor concerts every Friday and Saturday evening Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day from 5:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at their main stage.
The center is located at 1001 Heavenly Village Way surrounding the Marriott resorts and gondola. Parking garage is $5 after 5:00 pm.
The events, which last through Labor Day, are held every Friday and Saturday (with a Sunday bonus over holidays) and showcase the talents of both regional and national musicians.
Of the 15 acts that are scheduled to make a combined total of just over 30 appearances in the village this summer, most hail from locations in the western United States such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas and Reno.
“There’s a lot of local talent in that village, but they’re playing there on a daily basis in front of the restaurants — in front of Gunbarrel, in front of Base Camp and in front of Azul,” Murin said of the music scene in Heavenly Village, which welcomes Tahoe-based artists daily throughout the year.
“They always have local talent out there, so what we try to do is let local talent shine every single day, but also bring in some music and some entertainers from out of the area that people haven’t seen before. Add a little bit of variation and freshness there.”
The concert series has grown in size each year — what began with merely five shows held on a stage riser is now a grand production with rotating locations and other improvements, and which draws upwards of 500 people each night.
“We’ve enhanced overall production and added a bunch of lighting elements. We’ve brought in more out-of-town acts this year,” Murin explained, adding that he now receives calls from national acts wanting to play the series.
“Our ultimate goal is to expand the series to have one or two big, well-known headliners every single year.”
Apart from being Lake Tahoe’s largest free summer concert series, what also sets the Heavenly Village events apart from other seasonal entertainment is its family-friendly environment.
Concerts are held either between Gunbarrel Tavern and Fire + Ice or in front of Azul Latin Kitchen.
A complete schedule for the Heavenly Village Summer Concert Series is available online at http://www.theshopsatheavenly.com. Each show begins at 5:30 p.m.