WPKN's Rick Petrone interviews Jazz Sax artist Marshall McDonald by WPKN Community Radio published on 2017-08-15T20:46:36Z BIOGRAPHY Whether playing Lead alto with The Count Basie Orchestra in venues all over the world, or playing tenor saxophone with Paquito D’Rivera or baritone saxophone with Abdullah Ibrahim or clarinet solos with The Duke Ellington Orchestra, Marshall McDonald upholds the traditions of Jazz Music created by the jazz masters. A seasoned reedman, having played 30 years in the New York City area, he is well known for his ability to play all of the saxophones and woodwinds. Marshall was offered the baritone saxophone chair with the great Lionel Hampton in 1991, a position he quickly accepted and toured the world with Lionel, playing jazz festivals and concerts in The United States, Europe, Canada, South America and Asia. Marshall toured and recorded with Paquito D’Rivera and the United Nation Orchestra on alto, tenor, soprano and baritone for 4 years. During this time he also played alto saxophone with The Illinois Jacquet Big Band, lead alto with The Charli Persip Supersound Band, tenor saxophone with The Bobby Caldwell Band in New York City, and alto saxophone with The Chico O’Farrill Orchestra. Playing with Chico O’Farrill led to a close up in the Pierce Brosnan movie, The Thomas Crown Affair during the famous ballroom dance scene, and participation in the historic jazz movie, Calle 54. In addition, Marshall was asked to play lead alto by Frank Foster and the Loud Minority Big Band. Marshall has been a full time member of The Count Basie Orchestra for 15 years, the last ten of which has found him holding down the lead alto sax chair famously held by the great Marshal Royal. He first started in the band underneath lead alto player, Danny Turner, and Mr. Turner explained to him, “The style of lead playing in the Basie band was passed down from Marshal Royal to Bobby Plater and then to me.” Marshall had studied the Basie style while in music school at University of Pittsburgh, and now he was getting first hand knowledge from Danny Turner, Frank Foster, Kenny Hing and John Williams.