Born in Oakland, California, Michele Rosewoman studied jazz with pianist Ed Kelly. Later studies in percussion led her to ancient Caribbean folkloric idioms. Over the span of two
decades, Rosewoman stands out in her class as a visionary bandleader, composer and performer. As a vanguard jazz artist and pianist, firmly grounded in tradition, she deftly fuses acoustic modern jazz, funk, electric fusion and Afro Cuban elements, to deliver unforgettable, transcendent musical experiences.
In the Bay Area, she performed with her own ensembles and with fellow jazz innovators: Julian Priester, Julius Hemphill, Baikida Carroll and Oliver Lake. In New York, she formed new ensembles and continued to present her music with collaborators Rufus Reid, Reggie Workman, Freddie Waits, James Spaulding, Billy Hart, Carlos Ward and the inimitable master drummer/vocalist from Cuba, the late Orlando "Puntilla‟ Rios, and others.
Rosewoman‟s innovative projects garnered critical acclaim and major awards andrecognitions. Highlights include grants from the National Endowment for the Arts for “New Yor-Uba, A Musical Celebration of Cuba in America.” For Quintessence- cited as one of thebest jazz recordings of the 80‟s- she won two Chamber Music /Doris Duke Foundation New Works Creation and Presentation Commissions and a Chamber Music America Encore Grant. An ASCAP/Meet the Composer Commission for Emerging Composers culminated in a world premiere in New York City featuring the 40-piece Brooklyn Philharmonic Orchestra.
Known for bringing together some of the most inventive voices in jazz, including Miguel Zenon, Steve Coleman, Greg Osby, Gary Thomas, Steve Wilson, Mark Shim, Robin Eubanks, Kenny Davis, Terri Lyne Carrington, and others, many have cited that working with Rosewoman made an indelible mark on their artistic development as musicians, composers and bandleaders
Rosewoman has performed at festivals, concert halls and clubs and conducted educational workshops at colleges and universities throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe.
An NPR review of her and her work as, “an indomitable modern jazz pianist [with] singular, sound ideas [which] expand readily to her dark, fiery ensembles” fittingly describe her style, commitment and passion. Thus, Ms. Rosewoman is highly regarded as one of the most ingenious pianists, composers and prolific bandleaders of her generation—a reputation she enjoys to this day.
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Jaijai, what a wonderful mission you've undertaken to create such a place for artistic minds to meet and share their hearts. A place to renew faded determinations, and revive lessened momentums. A place to display our wares and reconfirm to one another that we actually are on the right track.
I commend you, Jaijai, for caring so much that you created this castle of the heart for all of us. I want to share my praise for all of the new friends as well as old friends that I've met and will meet here in our castle. Here we can garnish the where-with-all, the strength, the conviction, and the selflessness through our symbiosis, to share our gift to the world with an unbiased agenda.
My mentor, Daisaku Ikeda says of art: "A beautiful flower delights and refreshes the hearts of all people equally, no matter what soil it grows in. That is the power of beauty. The same is true of great art. It is this spirit that the German poet Heinrich Heine sang of when he wrote that once the peapod bursts open, the sugar peas inside are for everyone to enjoy."