After trooping with two of Spokane’s most popular bands, Mark Ward is flying solo.
Ward made a name for himself locally, first as a member of the acoustic duet Meridian, which split when singer Amanda Fouty left to focus on her family earlier this year.
Then Ward joined The Side Project in the spring after it moved to Seattle.
Last week Ward began parting ways with The Side Project to return to Spokane to pursue his music.
“The Side Project has a lot of good things going on, but I wanted to do my own thing, so I came back to Spokane to start over,” Ward said.
Ward said he’ll finish touring the festival circuit with The Side Project this summer as he shifts to playing coffee houses around the state and recruiting a band to back up his acoustic singer-songwriter sound, which he describes as laid back but with points of intensity. He hopes for a band with a cello, keys and stripped-down drums.
“This is my first true solo venture. I’m excited for it, honestly. It’s what I’ve always wanted to do, but I didn’t have the confidence before,” Ward said. “Before I played in The Side Project, I did my solo stuff when I could get to it. Now I’m playing with The Side Project when I can, but it’s hard to be a part of something when you’re not really feeling it.”
Track 7 Records, home of The Side Project, has said it was planning to release Ward’s solo album, though Ward said he is keeping his options open for his solo album, which he anticipates recording in the fall.
Listen to Ward’s solo show tonight at 7 at Rock Coffee, 920 W. First Ave. No cover.
Check out tracks from Meridian’s latest and last album at www.spokane7.com/soundwave.
Good cause, good music
Several local rock bands are teaming up tonight at 7 for the Notes of Hope benefit show for Alex Brown and Brian Ashmore, the boys burned last month while playing on a slide.
Both boys were in critical condition at a burn center in Seattle at press time.
The Big Easy Concert House has donated the venue, so 100 percent of the money raised goes to the boys’ families to help with treatment costs.
The lineup includes various forms of rock from The Half Racks, Kite, Vertigo Bliss and 10 Minutes Down.
Tickets are $10, through TicketsWest, (800) 325-SEAT or www.ticketswest.com.