Ken McDonald Quartet
Led by Ken McDonald (bass)
The Ken McDonald Quartet formed in the winter of 2008 with their debut performance at the now defunct Concord Cafe. With saxophonist Paul Metcalfe and drummer Lowell Whitty being involved from the beginning, it took two years of searching (among many talented guitarists) to decide on Demetri Petsalakis as the permanent guitarist. The ensemble performs with an unbridled amount of exuberance and always maintains a high level of intensity no matter what the tempo, feel, or dynamic of the piece is. The almost telekinetic connection between the members of the band allows for them to take daring risks with the music without missing a beat or cue.
Ken's compositions show his passion for the jazz tradition while maintaining a modern and fresh perspective. The blues-based melodies and hard swinging grooves of early Blue Note recordings play a strong influence on his tunes. This, paired with a knack for experimentation, infuses his songs with both tradition and rhetoric. While by no means tame or pedestrian, Ken's music possesses an underlying sense of lyricism and sensitivity carried on strong melodic themes. Ken's music is a refreshing take on jazz that is accessible to any audience.