Kathi McDonald
Kathi McDonald
When such rock luminaries as The Rolling Stones, Leon Russell, Big Brother and the Holding Company, Long John Baldry, Nils Lofgren and Ike and Tina Turner specifically request her services to record vocals on their albums, then it proves the value and respect they attribute to the passion and prowess of Kathi's voice. Kathi McDonald, a veteran performer, has sung on dozens of gold LPs. Her soulful, passionate vocals combined with her legendary phrasing, impeccable timing and intonation are some of the reasons her vocals are an integral part of so many big hits. Her first solo album, Insane Asylum, was recorded with Neil Schon, John Cippolina, Ronnie Montrose, Aynsley Dunbar, Pete Sears, The Pointer Sisters and the Tower of Power horn section and is now a treasured collectors item. Still today, she is one of the most sought after duet and back-up singers in the industry. 
Kathi McDonald - Above and Beyond Transatlantic Management and Merrimack Records are proud to announce the release of  Kathi McDonald's first solo US release in twenty-five years!! Entitled "Above and Beyond" the album not only features the stunning vocals of Kathi McDonald but also includes keyboard virtuoso Brian Auger and harmonica wizard Lee Oskar.
Above & Beyond
Don't Give Up On Me
Georgia Sunday Morning
A Soulful Prayer
Girl, You Don't Move Me
I Put A Spell On You
Stray Cat
Two Drifters
Chicken Today, Feathers Tomorrow
Ain't It Wonderful
Season Of The Witch
Click here to listen to all clips

This CD is available through 
Transatlantic Management

Above & BeyondSave Your BreathInsane AsylumBackporch Gossip (With Seattle Women)We Are Not Good Girls (With Seattle Women)

Album Reviews

Partial List

1969 Ike & Tina Turner Come Together
1970 Joe Cocker Mad Dogs and Englishmen
1971 Big Brother & The Holding Company Be A Brother
1971 Freddy King Getting Ready
1971 Leon Russell Shelter People
1971 Delaney & Bonnie To Bonnie From Delaney
1971 Rita Coolidge Rita Coolidge
1972 Big Brother & The Holding Company How Hard It Is
1972 Rolling Stones Exile On Main Street
1972 Nils Lofgren All Out
1974 Kathi McDonald Insane Asylum
1975 Leon Russell Best Of Leon Russell 1971-1974
1976 Long John Baldry Baldry’s Out
1978 Quicksilver Messenger Service Solid Silver
1980 Ike & Tina Turner Best of Ike & Tina Turner 1969-1974
1982 Long John Baldry Best Of Long John Baldry
1991 Long John Baldry It Still Ain’t Easy
1994 Kathi McDonald Save Your Breath
1996 Nick Vigarino Victims Of Cool
1997 Kathi McDonald & Nick Vigarino Ghost Of Time
1997 Big Brother & The Holding Company Can't Go Home Again
1998 Mark Riley Lead Suit
1999 Kate Hart Queen Of The Night
1999 Seattle Women Back Porch Gossip
1999 Seattle Women We Are Not Good Girls
1999 Kathi McDonald Above & Beyond

by Rob Wilson 
(reprinted from The Subway web site)
Kathi McDonald
This Veteran’s Got Grit ‘n Grandeur

The following dialogue is a totally imaginary conversation…but it coulda happened!

     Scene: Famous Rock Producer’s Office.

     Time: The Present.

Producer: So, for how long have you been singing professionally, Ms. McDonald?

KMc: Oh, more than 30 years, I guess. It’s been a while, a lot of tours, a lot of studios.

Producer: And have we heard of any of the artists you’ve appeared or recorded with?

KMc: Probably, lessee…. Leon Russell, the Quicksilver Messenger Service, Rita Coolidge, Nils Lofgren before he joined the E-Street Band, the Stones...

Producer: You mean - that’s the Rolling Stones?

KMc: Yeah, I sang back-up on EXILE ON MAIN STREET…. uh, I also was featured with Joe Cocker, Ike & Tina Turner, England’s cult favorite Long John Baldry, Delaney and Bonnie, Dave Mason, Freddie King - and after Janis Joplin went solo, I took her spot with Big Brother and the Holding Company.

Producer: (sound of gasping, fainting middle-aged male - clutching resume and partially chewed Ybor City cigar - hitting the parquet floor).

If experience equated with wealth, Kathi McDonald could give George W. Bush a run for his campaign bankbook. But Kathi’s been content to offer solid "shadow" support, ducking the limelight to help make other good performers sound even better. She’s had a handful of solo efforts prior to ABOVE & BEYOND (Merrimack Records), but none as consistently pleasing, pleading and powerful. She wails and teases, snarls and soothes, filled to the gills with bluesy bombast, alternating tender sympathies and an emotional Earth Mother’s self-awareness / assurance / advice.

Vocal technique comparisons to Phoebe Snow, Tracy Nelson, Bonnie Raitt and Kate Taylor are inevitable here. But estrogen relationships have little to do with Kathi’s worldly professionalism and it’s the overall quality of the Joe Melinkas/Lee Oskar production that makes this disc spin several magnitudes shinier than most. Tasty musical touches are liberally sprinkled throughout ABOVE & BEYOND – Lee’s juicy harmonica riffs, UK legend Brian Auger’s time-tested keyboards (with some seriously soulful organ fills), whiplash guitar, and a dollop of polished brass.

Tracks which jump out front ‘n center include a deeply felt "Georgia Sunday Morning," a languid-but-intense take of Screamin’ Jay Hawkins’ "I Put a Spell On You," and a live dub of Donovan’s neo-classic "Season of the Witch" (which, if memory serves, bandmate Auger has previously covered with Julie Tippett). There’s not much that can be described as upbeat – no raucous Z.Z. Top boogie to bop down the blacktop by. But the residual sensation evoked from Kathi & Co. is the finest feeling that vintage R&B and blues can summon - one of an enticing, enveloping smoky glow, simultaneously infrared hot and inherently, indefensibly cool.

Girl Musician Online
May Featured Artist - Girl Musician Online
Big Brother & The Holding Company
Big Brother - History
Kathi at NW Blues
Rolling Stones - Exile On Main Street
Nick Vigarino
Freight & Salvage June 22, 2000
John Cipollina
Long John Baldry

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