Saturday, February 7, 2009


Today would be MARK ST. JOHN's 51st birthday. In celebration of Mark's life, who passed away on April 5, 2007, KISS MASK has teamed up with DEUCE NEWS/Italy ( ), who brings us this exclusive interview with Mark's sister, Kathleen Morton.
Hi everybody
Today is the birthday of Mark St. John.
I wanted to remember him, so thanks to his sister Kathleen I have the pleasure and the honour to
publish this exclusive interview with her, talking about his late brother Mark.
Hi Kathleen, thank you again to have accepted my request.
Reading some of the few past interviews I realised how Mark was really modest about his success
and really into the importance of human relationship.
"So fortunately in my life I had people around me who supported me and pushed me and kept me
going because if I hadn't had that support I probably wouldn't be doing this. They pushed me to a
point where it became a business. And that way there was some long term and short term goals
involved, like the whole family type of thing."
(Strike 46)

How do you recollect his efforts at those times to become a number 1?
Mark was a perfectionist. He studied all types of music. Beethoven, Mozart, different cultures,
ect. He practiced all the time. 24/7 He breathed, lived and probably dreamed about guitar.
Mark was really a talented musicians, he might play any kind of strings instruments from violin to ukulele, not talking about any sort of guitars or basses.

I guess you listened him playing all this sort of things, which was according to your personal tastes the instruments that better fitted his style and his being?
Mark was truly versatile in playing String Instruments. Everything he played he played with
perfection. My favourite would be the Gibson SG Doubleneck guitar. (before KISS) and in his
last years the Sitar and the Acoustic.

Mark joined KISS by June 1984 and he was out of the band by end of November.
On December 8, 1984 he was officially replaced by Bruce Kulick.
Mark was a very nice guy and very honest and simple.

History tells us Paul Stanley did not like his work on the Animalize demos, but he was also the on
who brought Mark in. What do you think caused the will to put him out of the band?
Mark was a progressive player. I believe Paul Stanley was impressed by his talent when he
hired him but when they actually began to play Mark's chops were a bit too much for Paul.
Soon after Mark departed from KISS he formed White Tiger which did really well being an
independent release, but unfortunately they did not get the right credit soon after.

He also joined another ex KISS member in the late '90, Peter Criss.
They played only once together live if I remember well.

What can you tell us about this period in Mark life?
Mark and Peter got along great. Peter Criss was a sweet heart. He would come to our house
and rehearse and on occasion stay for dinner. It was a time of creativity and exploration.
Without the pressure and limitations from KISS.

Have you or some member of your family the demos Mark recorded and have you ever took into consideration to get them published?
My Brother Michael is the keeper of those. I'm not sure what will happen with them. There
are some Michael played bass on. If something does develop it would be amazing. His style
was his own. A truly gifted player.
If you get a chance to listen to his last instrumental CD called the "Magic Bullet Theory" its
mind blowing. He played all the string instruments on the CD.

Kathleen, really really thank you to have been so kind with me over this chat.
One last question, how you would like the KISS fans remember your brother Mark?
As a great Guitar Player that loved to play for his Fans with all his heart and soul. Music was
his life till the very end. (He died while he was repairing a guitar for a local musician) We
miss him terribly but would like to believe that he's up there Rockin with all the great
musicians and having one hell of a time.
RIP Mark Leslie Norton (St.John)

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