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date: 19 November 2019

Rosewoman, Michele locked

  • Jeffrey Holmes


(b Oakland, CA, March 19, 1953). American pianist and composer. Before moving to New York in 1978, she studied with Ed Kelly, explored Cuban and Haitian folklore, and performed with Oliver Lake, Julius Hemphill, and her own ensembles in the San Francisco Bay Area. She received an NEA grant to form New Yor-Uba, a 14-piece big-band ensemble that debuted in late 1983; the group featured the Cuban drummer and vocalist Orlando “Puntilla” Rios and included Bob Stewart, Gary Thomas, David Sanchez, and Steve Berrios among its members. Her music offers a distinctive mix of Afro-Cuban, avant-garde, funk, and fusion elements, which are displayed in her recordings with her group Quintessence. This small ensemble, formed in 1986, has been her main creative vehicle, with which she has received three Chamber Music America grants. Rosewoman has also recorded on dates led by Lake, Greg Osby, Billy Bang, and Ralph Peterson. Her piano style is distinctive, muscular, and pointed and harbors a Monk-like spirit....

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