There aren’t a lot of acts that have stayed relevant for more than 25 years, much less that have the claim to fame of creating an entire genre of music. Mark Farina fits both categories as the demigod of house music and the creator of “mushroom jazz,” which combines elements of hip hop, downtempo, jazz, and world music, although any genre is fair game. Farina makes his yearly pilgrimage to Tahoe on Feb. 27 to play an epic four-hour set in Crystal Bay Casino’s Crown Room. We connected with Farina to find out what’s inspiring him lately, and why he prefers sets over two hours long.

What keeps bringing you back to Tahoe? Seems you come to town every winter and every show is legendary.

I love Tahoe. For one, I grew up in the Midwest and was in a ski club in the ’80s. Watching Hot Dog The Movie…it all started then.


Second, every time I come to Tahoe there is top-notch production with great sound that is a pleasure
to play on.

You will be peforming a four-hour set. What’s your longest set on record?

I prefer sets longer than two hours; four is ideal. It gives plenty of time to play various great tracks and not feel like I have to rush things. In Tokyo I played 10-hour sets a few times, starting around midnight [and playing] to 10 a.m.

Any music or musician you are loving right now?

I am digging busting out my old ’80s vinyl, like anything from The The to Ministry to Caberet Voltaire to The Smiths to Fad Gadget. Every day I get about 20 to 30 new tracks in emails. Gotta stay up on my homework.

What’s on the horizon for you?

New releases on my house label, Great Lakes Audio. Artists such as Lurob, Demuir, and Riki Innocente are coming in the next two months. Also Mushroom Jazz 8 is in the works. Playing Tomorrowland in Belgium and various other dates this summer.

Details and music at

~ Steve Emmerich/Special to Moonshine Ink

INFO: $10/limited advance, $17/advance, $20/door, 9 p.m., Crown Room, Crystal Bay Casino,

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