Don Menza

Don Menza

Don Menza at a concert in Germany 2010
Background information
Born (1936-04-22) April 22, 1936
Buffalo, New York, United States
Genres Jazz, big band, fusion
Occupation(s) Musician, bandleader
Instruments Saxophone
Years active 1950s–present
Labels Sackville, Palo Alto
Associated acts Maynard Ferguson, Buddy Rich

Don Menza (born April 22, 1936) is an American jazz saxophonist, arranger, and composer.[1]

Music career

Menza was born and raised in Buffalo, New York, where he began playing tenor saxophone when he was 13. He studied with musician John Sedola.

After serving in the U.S. Army, he was part of the Maynard Ferguson Orchestra from 1960–62 and then briefly worked for Stan Kenton. From 1964–68 he lived in Germany. In the U.S., he became a member of the Buddy Rich band in 1968 and recorded a well-known solo with that band at a live performance in Las Vegas. He lived in California and played with Elvin Jones and Louie Bellson.[1]

Menza composed "Groovin' Hard" and "Time Check", which became favorites of Doc Severinsen and Buddy Rich.. In 2005 Menza was inducted into the Buffalo Music Hall of Fame.[2]

He is the father of drummer Nick Menza, drummer for the heavy metal band Megadeth.



  1. 1 2 Yanow, Scott. "Don Menza | Biography & History | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 21 October 2016.
  2. "Don Menza BMHOF Class of 2005". Buffalo Music Hall of Fame. Retrieved January 26, 2013.
  3. "Don Menza | Album Discography | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 21 October 2016.

External links

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