Mark Bittler – Funk Republic Radio’s Mr. Regroovable World
Mark Bittler is an on-air personality with Funk Republic Radio and host of ‘Regroovable World’, a show that airs every other Wednesday from 11am – 1pm PST. Mark has been on-air with his show for about three months. When we spoke, Mark was working on composing a score for a movie.
Mark grew up in a small town in Oregon and began spinning music on the turntables while in high school when he was 15 years old. While the height of the disco craze was beginning, Mark played funk and groovy jams like Parliament, Bootsy Collins, and James Brown. During a visit to a Oregon radio station, Mark recalled interviewing Ray Charles who was visiting the station. The interview was not planned, but the two simply started talking while waiting for others. This was the coolest thing and his high school buddies probably thought he was jiving them with the story.
Mark is classically-trained on the piano and in music theory. He also learned to play the trumpet and french horn in high school. He shared the story of his parents who knew their son was really into music. When Mark was 5 or 6 years old, he would hear James Brown on the television performing and would run into the room to watch the singer.
For about two years out of high school, Mark worked as a radio station manager and weekend on-air personality in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s.
Mark is a composer, producer, and member of the band Bump Kitchen. The band was formed 11 years ago and Mark has been a member for 8 years. The six-member band all bring their own style which mixes well and centers around funk, jazz and soul.
The band does not set out on 3-4 month tours like some bands do, but they stay very busy during the months of May through September. The band plays venues in Oregon, Washington, British Columbia and Canada.
The name for the band Bump Kitchen came out of the members sitting around the kitchen table one day throwing out name ideas. The bumping beats that come while listening on the radio and boom boxes lead to the band’s name. It’s fitting especially since they were literally sitting in the kitchen.
The entire band contributes on the writing for the songs and music. Mark mentioned that someone will have an idea and shares it with the members when they meet up for their jam sessions. The band rehearses once a week given the work schedules of the members.
Mark lives with his girlfriend and her daughter in a suburb south of Tacoma, Washington.