Mark Allen Mothersbaugh (born May 18, 1950 in Akron, Ohio) is an American musician, composer, singer, and painter.


While Mothersbaugh attended Kent State as an art student, he met Devo co-founders Jerry Casale and Bob Lewis. After the infamous Kent State shootings closed the school for the spring and summer of 1970, Mothersbaugh joined with Lewis and Casale[1] who continued to develop the idea of the "devolution" of the human race, produce multi-media literary and Art Devo and, by 1973, started to perform music together as Devo, eventually known as a New Wave rock group.

Mark has limited his time with Devo as he developed a successful career writing musical scores for commercials, television, and film. In film, Mothersbaugh has worked frequently with filmmaker Wes Anderson, and scored Wes's first four feature films (Bottle Rocket, Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums, and The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou)ref, and contributed one percussion composition to the soundtrack for Moonrise Kingdom. Mark wrote the score for Thor: Ragnarok.

His musical compositions have been a staple of children's television shows since he did much of the music for Pee-Wee's Playhouse[2] in the 80's. Mark wrote music scores for many other shows including Rugrats and Clifford the Big Red Dog. He also wrote the theme song for the new Felix the Cat show for Hanna Barbera, and in 1990 and the theme song for The New Super Mario World for DiC Entertainment in 1991.

Mothersbaugh is also known for his music in video games including Sony's Crash Bandicoot series (which was primarily composed by Josh Mancell), the Jak and Daxter series, and Maxis Software's The Sims 2. This work is often done by Mutato Muzika, the music production company he formed with several other former members of Devo including his brother, Bob Mothersbaugh.

Mothersbaugh has composed music scores for many commercials including the distinctive music heard in the award-winning "Get A Mac" commercials (seen on TV and online) for Apple Computer 2006/2007.

In 2016, Mark had a major art career retrospective show that toured the country and an accompanying boo k. Jerry disputed the book's factuality and its emphasis on Devo, as Devo is separate from Mark's art and music scoring career. [3] [4]

Rev. Mothersbaugh is also a member[5] [6] and ordained Minister of the Church of the SubGenius, which is both a parody and a real religion. It mocks consumerism, cults, and the commercialization of religion, and Mark has produced songs and visual arts for the Church. [7]

Life without glasses

Mothersbaugh is legally blind. At the age of seven, he was taken to the optometrist where he obtained his first pair of glasses and saw, for the first time, "smoke from chimneys and birds." After truly "experiencing" the world for the first time, Mothersbaugh started to draw, and his second grade teacher praised his work. That same night he had dreamed of being a famous artist.


Solo discography

  • Muzik for Insomniacs (Cassette, 1987)
    Later released on CD as Muzik for Insomniacs, Vol. 1 and Muzik for Insomniacs, Vol. 2 in 1988 by Rykodisc
  • Muzik for the Gallery (LP, 1987)
  • Joyeux Mutato (CD, 1999)
  • The Most Powerful Healing Muzik in the Entire World (6-CD Set, 2005)
  • "Hello, My Good Friend" (12" Vinyl, 2016) one-track record store day release limited to 3000 copies


  1. "Devo The Book Is On The Way" by VVN Music on March 21, 2016 in News. The first press release/article promoting the upcoming official DEVO book. "The seeds of Devo were developed in the late 60’s when Kent State University students Gerald Casale and Bob Lewis came up with the idea of de-evolution and created satirical art pieces to demonstrate their concept. Casale was also performing in a local bands where he met Mark Mothersbaugh and, later, brought in his brother Bob, Rob Reisman and Fred Weber to form Sextet Devo".
  2. Forbes. 2014-3-6. Mark Mothersbaugh On Making Music For TV, Games And Film by David M. Ewalt. The first TV show I worked on was Pee-wee’s Playhouse. But that quickly led to a lot of other offers, and then to commercials.
  3. "Dean Delray's LET THERE BE TALK" 2015-9-16 Podcast. "#193:Jerry Casale/Devo" Interview.
  4. "Let There Be Talk" 2015-9-16 podcast recording. "#193:Jerry Casale/Devo" Interview - mirror site.
  5. Membership "Salvation/Membership/ Ordainment".
  6. 2000-4-6. "Slack Is Back Quit your job! Make waste! The Church of the SubGenius has come to town!" by Jeff Niesel. Celebrities such as Devo's Mark Mothersbaugh, writer Ken Kesey, actor Pee-Wee Herman, the Talking Heads' David Byrne, and director Jonathan Demme are all card-carrying members.
  7. dailymotion. (An example of Mark's contributions.) The Bobacatto (Mark Mothersbaugh/SubGenius Foundation) uploaded by Cale Stacy. "Music by Rev. Mark Mothersbaugh of DEVO, with animation by Rev. Ivan Stang and artwork by Nenslo, St. Kenneth Huey and Mr. Fernandinande LeMur."

External Links[]

Mark Mothersbaugh | Gerry Casale | Bob Mothersbaugh
Bob Lewis | Bob Casale | Jim Mothersbaugh | Alan Myers
David Kendrick | Josh Freese
Jeff Friedl | Josh Hager
Record Labels / Publishers
Booji Boy Records | Warner Brothers | Enigma | Devo, Inc. 
Stiff | Virgin | Rykodisk | Infinite Zero | Restless | Discovery | Rhino 
MVD Audio | The Orchard | Superior Viaduct | Futurismo
Brian Eno | Ken Scott | Robert Margouleff | Roy Thomas Baker | DEVO 
The Teddybears | Greg Kurstin | Santi White | John King | John Hill | Mark Nishita 
Official Studio Albums
Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo! (1978) | Duty Now For The Future (1979) | Freedom of Choice (1980) | New Traditionalists (1981) | oh, no! it's DEVO (1982) | Shout (1984) | Total DEVO (1988) | SmoothNoodleMaps (1990) | Something for Everybody   (2010)
Other Albums
Be Stiff EP (1977) | E-Z Listening Disc (1987) | Now It Can Be Told: DEVO at the Palace (1989) | Hardcore DEVO Vol. 1 74-77 (1990) | Hardcore DEVO Vol. 2 1974-1977 (1991) | DEVO Live: The Mongoloid Years (1992) | DEV-O Live (1999) | Recombo DNA (2000) | Live In Central Park (2004) | DEVO Live 1980 (2005) | New Traditionalists: Live 1981 Seattle (2012) | Something ELSE for Everybody  (2013) | Miracle Witness Hour  (2014) | Live at Max's Kansas City - November 15, 1977  (2014) | Butch Devo and the Sundance Gig  (2014) | Hardcore DEVO Live!  (2015)
The Men Who Make The Music (1981) | Human Highway (1982) | We're All DEVO (1984) | The Complete Truth About De-Evolution (1993) | DEVO Live (2004) | DEVO Live In The Land Of The Rising Sun (2004) | DEVO Live 1980 (2005) | Hardcore DEVO Live!  (2015)
Related Articles
History | Bootlegs | Booji Boy | Devolution | Influence | The Wipeouters | Jihad Jerry & The Evildoers | Devo 2.0 | Akron, Ohio | Music Videos | Versions | Outfits