Guitarist Mark Birch was born in Kidderminster, in the Midlands, and realized at a very early age that all he wanted to do was play music. He formed his first band at the age of 15. After playing and recording around the Midlands, he joined a London-based band whose lead singer was Nev MacDonald, from the UK band SKIN. When that band split up, he submersed himself in the London scene, playing with many different bands simultaneously. In doing so, he learned to sing and to front a band. Outside of his work with Wishbone Ash, Mark currently plays and sings a variety of styles of music, from Britpop to rock to acoustic "etherial" - he keeps himself busy!
Of his music, Mark says,"I see the guitar as an integral part of a whole - it's much more fulfilling to react to other people than to be just individually proficient. My influences include the inimitable BB King, Free, Louis Armstrong, and Radiohead. For pure guitar, I love what Eddie Van Halen does. My favourite guitar is my 70's Les Paul Standard. It sounds great through my old Marshall series 2 50w combo."
Mark "auditioned" for Wishbone Ash via the Internet. After he'd made contact with Andy, they exchanged music and photos by e-mail. As Mark says, "Wishbone Ash is one band that is definitely not stuck in the past!!"
Of his experience with the band, Mark says, "Playing with Wishbone Ash is like a breath of fresh air. The music and musicianship is superb, and the blend of personalities make it a joy to be in the band. I think that audiences picked up on this on the recent tour, with many of them telling us how much they like this current line-up."