The Best In British Jazz
John Donaldson started played keyboards and piano in various bands in the 70.s including a stint with Viv Stanshall's 'Big Grunt'. Jazz gigs started when he was a student in 1978, being part of the Cambridge Modern Jazz Club's resident trio along with Chucho Merchan and Nic France and backed visiting guest soloists in the city. In 1980 he won the prize for best soloist at the San Sebastian International Jazz Competition
In 1982 he moved to California. He studied with Joe Henderson, played with Paul Contos, Stan Poplin, Kenny Stahl, Tim Jackson, Randy Masters, Larry Grenadier, Jeff Ballard, Donny McCaslin, Eddie Marshall, Kenny Wolleson, Ben Goldberg, Daniel Sabanovich and gigged with notables including Eddie Henderson, Red Holloway, John Handy, Richie Cole, Paul Jackson, David Baker, Steve Turre, Laurindo Almeida.
Since returning to London in 1993 he has been active on the UK scene playing in groups led by Iain Ballamy, Art Themen, Clark Tracy, Alan Barnes, Don Weller, John Etheridge, Dick Pearce and Norma Winstone. He has also accompanied visiting soloists, Art Farmer, Conte Condoli, Freddie Hubbard, Buddy de Franco/Terry Gibbs, Scott Hamilton, Ingrid Jensen, Jon Gordon and co-lead the band 'Septpiece' with Dave Mattacks and Andrew Cleyndert.
In 2006 he was the winner of the piano catagory at the Marstons Pedigree British Jazz Awards. 'Live at the Appleby Jazz Festival' was on the Irish Times list of essential CD's of 2006.
He currently leads a trio featuring drummer Asaf Sirkis, has a piano duo with Mark Edwards and also a two keyboard/percussion trio with Mark Edwards and Asaf Sirkis.