Mark Morrison (born in Hanover, Germany) is a British R&B singer who saw luke warm success in the mid-1990s. His multi-platinum single, "Return of the Mack" became a #1 and top ten hit across Europe in 1996, and opened the U.S. market for him the following year, where the record achieved platinum status, spending 25 weeks in the U.S. Billboard Charts.
Early career: "The Mack"
Morrison first recorded professionally in 1995 whilst held in Leicester Prison, during a three month stint resulting from an incident in a club. His first release was "Crazy", in spring 1995; the single reached the Top 20 in the UK, with the minor hit "Let's Get Down" following in the autumn. "Return of the Mack" followed in spring 1996, and was the first single by a solo Black British male artist to reach the number 1 spot in the UK Singles Chart in the 1990s. A reissue of "Crazy" hit the Top 10 in summer 1996, with further single releases "Trippin'", "Horny" and "Moan and Groan" also making the Top 10 in the UK Singles Chart. Morrison's first album, also titled Return of the Mack, was released in 1996 by Warner Bros/Atlantic Records, and reached number 4 in the UK Album Chart. As a result of these works, Morrison was nominated for four Brit Awards, though he won none, and received a Mercury Prize nomination, an MTV Europe Music Awards nomination, and 5 MOBO Awards nominations, of which he won "Best R&B Act". He performed at the Brit Awards 97', like many of his TV appearances, he protested his innocence on stage by wearing a black long sleeve top stating "Only God Can Judge Me", and whipping out a gun with the "Not Guilty" message at an awards show and having female dancers dressed as scantily clad policewomen.
The performance at the '97 Brit's influenced WEA and Morrison to release Only God Can Judge Me, a 9-track EP which contained live performances, interviews, prayers and 3 full-length songs including "Who's The Mack", which reached #13 in the UK Singles Chart.
Controversy and Death Row Records
Despite his career success, Morrison continued to be accused of various crimes, and in 1997 he was convicted of attempting to bring a stun gun onto an aircraft. He was jailed for three months for this offence in early 1997, at about the same time that the single "Return of the Mack" began its climb to the #2 slot in the US charts.
Morrison was asked to return for the '99 Brit Awards, where he presented an award, introduced Whitney Houston and announced his return to music.
Return to music: Innocent Man
Morrison recently released a limited edition DVD/CD version of his comeback album Innocent Man in the UK, independently through his own imprint Mack Life Records/Mona Records, and is due for an official marketed re-release, featuring artists such as DMX, Alexander O'Neal, Elephant Man, Tanya Stephens, Terrell Owens and production from Jive artist, T-Pain.
Mark Morrison featured on Cassidy's song 'Innocent Man (Misunderstood)' from his B.A.R.S. The Barry Adrian Reese Story album. The track samples Morrison's lyrics from the song Innocent Man.