IT takes a special kind of talent to survive 30 years in the music business, let alone thrive as Mark Lizotte has done.
The man who rose to fame as Johnny Diesel in the late 1980s is celebrating the milestone with a brand new greatest hits collection, showcasing the best of his soulful voice and sublime guitar work.
He is playing three shows in his hometown of Perth this October – at the Northshore Tavern (Hillarys), the Charles Hotel (North Perth) and the Ravenswood Hotel.
Lizotte, who grew up in Doubleview, was surrounded by music from an early age.
His father played the saxophone, his sister the flute and Mark was handed a cello when he was eight.
But it was the guitar that captured his imagination, and when he finally picked one up at 14, he set a cracking pace.
“I guess I got good quicker than most people, because my hands were used to the cello,” he said.
“Perth was a place where it wasn’t too hard to get gigs at that time – it was really fertile.”
After his 1989 debut yielded the massive hit Cry In Shame, Lizotte said the follow-up – Hepfidelity – was probably the album he was most proud of.
“I guess that record was really me shedding a lot of ideas and preconceptions and opening up new doors,” he said.
“That was a real kind of watershed moment for me.”
What: Diesel 30th Anniversary Tour
Where: Northshore Tavern, Charles Hotel, Ravenswood Hotel
When: October 5-7