Snowboy (a.k.a. Mark Cotgrove) is an English percussionist, bandleader, DJ, music critic, journalist and music promoter.
Featured in the Who's Who of Latin American Music, Snowboy has released 16 albums and 20 singles in a career that spans over 30 years on labels such as Acid Jazz, Polydor, Ubiquity, Freestyle, Ace and many more, and has taken him and his authentic Afro-Cuban sound to concert stages all over the world. As a freelance percussionist in many styles, he has performed or recorded with Lisa Stansfield, Imelda May, Amy Winehouse, Rod Temperton, Mark Ronson, Basia, Simply Red, Makoto Kuriya, Flaco Jimenez, Airto Moreira, Deodato, Mick Hucknall, Herman Olivera, Jon Lucien, James Taylor Quartet, Mica Paris, Incognito, Darrel Higham, Patti Austin, Big Boy Bloater and many, many more.
Snowboy – with his band the Latin Section, comprising the cream of the UK's Latin Jazz musicians – carries the torch with their authentic Latin jazz style. Together they create a sound which whilst encompassing the influences from the masters of the genre (in particular Eddie Palmieri and Tito Puente), is also highly capable of intense swing and verve. Snowboy and the Latin Section have developed a unique and often identifiable sound in Latin dance music, something that is hard to do in this day and age, especially in the Latin jazz arena. Percussively explosive uptempo original compositions, at times tinged with folklore that continues their quest to keep the music exciting and to keep the dancers dancing.
Snowboy is currently still touring with his own band and Lisa Stansfield and is involved in production with Lisa, DB Cohen and Chloe Marriot.
Outside of his Percussion work, Snowboy has been a club and radio DJ since 1978, specialising in all forms of Latin music, jazz, soul and funk, and in fact co created (with Keb Darge) the world-wide Deep Funk movement through the club of the same name in 1995. At the time of writing (2016) he has a residence at South London Soul Train at the Bussey Building in Peckham, London. As a radio presenter, he has worked on many stations from Jazz FM, Solar and a regular on Southport Weekender Radio as well as many pirate stations. He was also the music programmer for Craig Charles' Funk and Soul show on BBC 6 Music for 4 years.
Although not as a performer, Snowboy also co-organises the yearly 30s and 40s Vintage weekend event, Riviera Swing at the Victoria Hotel in Torquay.
He is also the author of the social and dance history book 'From Jazz Funk and Fusion to Acid Jazz – A History of the UK Jazz Dance scene '