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Muddy Helmet: Marcs BIO

Marc - Guitars

Marc Joseph Merrill was born in Michigan into a military family in April 1972 and shortly after moved to Indiana. Only knowing the music that his parents listened to until about the age of nine or ten when his oldest brother Mike (also a guitarist) introduced him to Kiss, Black Sabbath, Rush, and of all things the Beatles.

At first Marc showed a big interest in the drums and had made a deal with his parents that whatever money he saved up they would match and buy him a drum set for his 11th birthday. Shortly after moving to Germany his birthday arrived and he only had fifty bucks. His mom knew he would fall short and had already made an arrangement with the families down stairs neighbor (Joe Ayers founding member of the eighties band KIX) to buy his Gibson flying V with a Stratocaster neck and a fifty watt gem amp. Joe knew there was something to invest in and saw that Marc really had the music in his blood and sold the gear for $100.00.

Mike had moved out by then and there was nobody to show him how to play and the family really couldn't afford lessons so Marc sat in his room not interested in anything but the highest notes on the fret board and making as much noise as possible.

After playing for about five years he moved back to the states (Oklahoma) and started jamming with Kriss Ford who would become the rhythm guitarist for several of the bands Marc played in. He really started to get serious around the age of 18 when the bands he played in were getting better and they started playing more and more shows.

A natural on stage and in front of large crowds he cut his teeth or should I say his chops playing all over the state with several bands and in the comfort of many unpaid for jam rooms dedicating everything he had to the music he loved so much.

As a roadie for a hometown act “Oliver Magnum” he really learned the most about what it meant to be in a real band giving 110% no matter if there were 5 or 5000 people. He met many of the bands that Magnum opened for (Pantera, Overkill, and Nuclear Assault among a few) and was addicted to the way of life and would do whatever he could to be a part of it.

He ended up playing in the following bands from the ages of 17 to 27.

Destiny, DSS, Executioner, Malefic Children, Steele Crystal, Bug Spit, and Stripped. After Stripped broke up in April he thought he had given his best and it just wasn't meant to be. Discouraged he decided to Join the Navy and shipped out to boot camp in August of 1999.

While in the Navy he started a band named “Resin”. They wrote 6 songs and worked up enough covers to play on the flight deck of the Aircraft Carrier USS CARL VINSON on two separate occasions during Operation Enduring Freedom and in front of about five thousand people. They also got a gig in Hawaii on the way back from cruise at the Wave in Waikiki in front of about a thousand people. The band went there separate ways after that cruise but the fire had been reignited.

Marc moved to Florida and recorded about a dozen songs were he did everything but it has yet to be released to the public. He spent most of that time honing his skills working with Pro Tools and opened a studio named Right Hook Recordings.

In October 2007 he moved to Japan and was still learning Pro Tools and playing more than ever but did not have any intention on starting a band. That is until he met a guitar player named James Kerlin who introduced him to Don Salamon. For the rest of that story read the bands bio.

Bands that influenced Marc include to name a few: Metallica, Testament, Slayer, Pantera, Death Angel, Anthrax, Megadeth, Black Sabbath, Kiss and Ozzy.

Guitarist that influenced Marc: Dimebag Darrell, Randy Rhoads, Scott Ian, James Hetfield, Dave Mustaine, Ace Fraley, and Mick Mars

The guitar work that Marc provides for Muddy Helmet on their first CD Caked really showcases what he has learned over the years. Tasteful and precise he would rather have a bad ass ass rhythm part be the lead then force a lead in the same spot just say “ look what I can do“.

Marc is still in Navy and holds the job title of Aviation Ordnanceman First Class Air Warfare Specialist. Eleven years in and only nine more until he retires. With plans to keep making music and eventually open a studio to keep his old ass busy after the military.