10 Things We Learned From ‘Marky Mark,’ Mark Wahlberg’s 1992 Autobiography

The rapper shared some of his thoughts in a revealing (if spare) memoir.
Mark Wahlberg, a.k.a. Marky Mark.
Mark Wahlberg, a.k.a. Marky Mark. / Tim Roney/GettyImages

Before Mark Wahlberg was a respected actor collaborating with Paul Thomas Anderson (Boogie Nights) and Martin Scorsese (The Departed), he was the rapper and Calvin Klein underwear model known as Marky Mark. The singer toured and performed with his band, the Funky Bunch, and released the hit single “Good Vibrations.”

Like many 1990s luminaries, Wahlberg also issued his own memoir. With photographer Lynn Goldsmith, he published 1992’s Marky Mark, a photo-heavy stroll through his then-21-year-old psyche, which was heavily preoccupied with women, fitness, and music. Here’s what we gleaned.

1. Marky Mark dedicated the book to his penis.

Mark Wahlberg is pictured
Marky Mark bares all. / Tim Roney/GettyImages

Books are generally dedicated to an author’s loved ones, like spouses or children, or perhaps their work colleagues or contemporaries. Marky Mark dedicated his to his male organ. “I wanna dedicate this book to my dick,” he wrote.

2. The Funky Bunch existed before Marky Mark.

Scott Ross, Mark Wahlberg, Hector Barrow, Terry Yancey, and Anthony Thomas are pictured
Marky Mark and The Funky Bunch. / Tim Roney/GettyImages

According to Mark’s brother Donnie Wahlberg, who was a member of New Kids on the Block prior to his younger brother’s entry into music, he came up with the Funky Bunch rap squad before Mark was performing. “I already had that name for a group,” Donnie said. “I didn’t want him to be by himself on stage as a white dude rapping. I wanted to fill it up with a lot of activity. And I didn’t want it to look like anybody else.”

One Funky member postulated that Donnie could have adopted the group for himself. “It could have easily been Donnie Don and the Funky Bunch,” he said.

3. The Funky Bunch (correctly) believed their audience was mostly there for Marky Mark’s body.

Mark Wahlberg is pictured
Marky Mark in his business attire. / Barry King/GettyImages

Marky Mark quotes one member of the Funky Bunch, Hector Barros, as saying the crowd may not necessarily be into the music. “We started putting a good show on but I think a lot of the young girls out there just have an infatuation with Mark looking good and are not really into his lyrics or what he’s saying or what we’re doing," he said. "It’s a lot of that.” (Hector was better known by his stage name Hector the Booty Inspector.)

4. Marky Mark did not need to compete with his brother for women.

Mark Wahlberg is pictured
Marky Mark in 1991. / Barry King/GettyImages

“Donnie used to get all the girls cuz he had the money,” Marky Mark said. “We got a lot of karma with girls. We generally like the same girls, but we never chase the same ones.”

5. Mark and Donnie disagreed about who gave Mark his stage name.

Donnie Wahlberg and Mark Wahlberg are pictured
Donnie and Mark Wahlberg. / Lynn Goldsmith/GettyImages

“I know he says he did,” Marky Mark said. “Well … it’s up in the air [but] I’m the only motherfucker who answers to it. The only motherfucker gettin’ paid from that name.”

6. Marky Mark regretted his Sylvester and Tweety tattoo.

Mark Wahlberg is pictured
Marky Mark got a cover-up tattoo. / Barry King/GettyImages

Marky Mark was quizzed about his lower leg tattoo of Sylvester the Cat and Tweety, the rivals from Looney Tunes. “I only picked it because I wanted to cover up what was there before.” (A playing card he did himself.) Mark added that it was “corny” and “I regret getting it because it marks up my body for life. And if I ever do anything bad they can identify me by it.”

7. Marky Mark has a third nipple.

Mark Wahlberg is pictured
Marky Mark in 1991. / Barry King/GettyImages

Though he’s often gone shirtless on stage and in film, it might be difficult to notice that Marky Mark sports a third nipple. “It’s cool,” he said. “It’s unique … it’s dope.”

8. Marky Mark knew the value of education.

Mark Wahlberg is pictured
Marky Mark dropped out of high school. / Steve Eichner/GettyImages

Marky Mark dropped out of high school, but one could infer he regretted it. “You can motherfuckin snake and connive any shit you want in life if you got education," he said. "Then you know how to use that shit to your advantage and trick motherfuckers and shit.” (He later went back to earn his diploma at the age of 42.)

9. Marky Mark’s signature move of dropping his pants upset his mom.

Mark Wahlberg is pictured
Marky Mark minus pants. / Barry King/GettyImages

Marky Mark’s trademark stage move of performing in his underwear displeased his mother, Alma. “When I first heard he dropped his pants, I asked, ‘Why do you have to do that?’” she said. “I offered him suspenders and belts and whatever it would take to hold them up. But I knew that when he did it he had running shorts on under the underwear. So it wasn’t too, too upsetting to me.”

10. Marky Mark was unsure what would come next.

Leonardo DiCaprio and Marky Mark are pictured
Leonardo DiCaprio and Mark Wahlberg in 1995. / Kevin.Mazur/GettyImages

“I’m still unsure about what I want to do with the rest of my life,” Mark said. Just two years later, he would make his film debut in 1994’s Renaissance Man. By 1995, he was co-starring with Leonardo DiCaprio in The Basketball Diaries. By 1998, he had retired from music completely.

While Wahlberg would later say he felt “embarrassed” by his musical stint, it did little to affect his acting career. His films have grossed well over $5 billion at the worldwide box office.

Read More About Music: