Drummer, composer and educator Mark Walker has been one of the most respected names on the jazz scene for four decades. He has performed on five continents with some of the best musicians in the world and appears on over 75 recordings, including two Grammy award-winning albums, four Latin Grammy-winning albums, seven Grammy-nominated albums and one Latin Grammy-nominated album.
He has performed extensively and recorded with Paquito D’Rivera, Oregon (feat. Ralph Towner), Lyle Mays, Michel Camilo, the Caribbean Jazz Project, Andy Narell, Dave Samuels, Eliane Elias, Patricia Barber, George Garzone, Randy Brecker and Cesar Camargo Mariano.
Both Oregon and Paquito D’Rivera have recorded Walker’s compositions. His composition “Deep Six” won a Grammy nomination in the category of best instrumental composition in 2007.
Walker’s first record as a leader, “You Get What You Give,” featuring special guest Paquito D’Rivera, was released on his own Fliposphere Music label in 2019. The album reached #42 on Jazz Week, #14 on Roots Music Report and the top ten on the NACC radio charts. Innerviews’ Anil Prasad wrote, “I’m a huge admirer of Oregon jazz group and its extended family’s output. The band’s drummer, Mark Walker, has an excellent debut solo album that was just released titled ‘You Get What You Give.’ It’s a kinetic and engaging effort that combines jazz and Afro-Latin approaches, featuring the great Paquito D’Rivera. Mark steps to the fore with a focus on creative original works, as well as imaginative arrangements of Wayne Shorter’s “Speak No Evil,” John Coltrane’s “Moment’s Notice” and Thelonious Monk’s “Bye-Ya.” Mark is one of the finest drummers working on the planet and one of the most important voices in the genre. Jazz fans worldwide will get a lot out of this hugely-enjoyable release.”
Encouraged by the success of his first solo album, Walker has embarked on a new musical journey. He is currently in the process of writing, arranging and recording a big band record with an ensemble he calls the “World Jazz Orchestra,” which will be released in 2020. He is also producing recordings with smaller groups, including a quartet featuring legendary saxophonist George Garzone. Walker performs on a new album project with guitarist Akio Sasajima, trumpeter Randy Brecker and guest Will Lee, entitled “Silence Between the Notes,” to be released in 2020.