Donald Walden, saxophonist/composer received the Jazz Master Award presented by Arts Midwest in 1996, making him one of six Detroit musicians to receive this award. Walden presently holds the position of Associate Professor of Jazz Studies at the University of Michigan where he's taught for the past 10 years.
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One of the most satisfying aspects I find in the recordings of John Coltrane is an indefinable spirtuality that seems to emanate from his saxophone. Donald Walden plays with a similar intensity. That is not to say that Walden and Coltrane sound alike, because they don't. Both saxophonists play with a similar sense of urgency that makes me listen more carefully to their playing than I do to the playing of some other musicians - John Laughter - Saxophone Journal