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Rosen, Jay / Brian Willson: Mystery Brothers (Not Two)

Official issue of the drumming duo of Jay Rosen (Trio X, Cosmosomatics) and Brian Wilson (Pauline Oliveros, Ivo Perelman), performing at Whitman Hall in Brooklyn College in 2008, presenting 5 concertos for two drums written by both performers, through pristine recordings demonstrating melodicism through rhythm as they explore a wide range of timbre and color.

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product information:

UPC: 690635187447

Label: Not Two
Catalog ID: MW984-2
Squidco Product Code: 27322

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2019
Country: Poland
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold
Recorded at Whitman Hall, at Brooklyn College, in Brooklyn, New York, on December 10th, 2008, by Alfredo Marin.


Jay Rosen-drums

Brian Willson-drums

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Artist Biographies:

"Jay Rosen (born November 20, 1961) is an American jazz drummer. He is a member of Trio X with Joe McPhee and Dominic Duval and performs in Cosmosomatics with Sonny Simmons.

At age 10, Rosen became interested in jazz drumming after seeing Tony Williams perform with Sonny Rollins. He took lessons from Tracy Alexander, son of Mousey Alexander (with an occasional lesson from the elder Alexander). Later, he would study briefly with Barry Altschul.

Around age 18, Rosen became a professional musician. He worked at studios, weddings, and cocktail lounges in rock, rhythm and blues, country, jazz, and Brazilian music. His recording career in improvised music began in the mid-1990s, when he recorded Split Personality (GM Records) with Mark Whitecage and Dominic Duval. He began an association with the CIMP label in 1996, and has also recorded for Cadence). Todd Jenkins describes Rosen and Duval as the "house rhythm section" for CIMP, given the number of recordings on which they have appeared.:231

Since 1998, Rosen has performed with Joe McPhee and Dominic Duval in Trio X.:360 In 2000, he joined Cosmosomatics, a quartet with saxophonists Sonny Simmons and Michael Marcus and bassist William Parker.:114

Rosen describes himself as "a musician who plays percussion" rather than "'just a drummer.'" He uses a set of small cymbals that he approaches "like a string player, or a reed player," and his drum kit includes objects such as a boat propeller and a set of organ pipes that he activates with foot-driven bellows. Although Rosen is associated with free improvisation, he questions whether the music he plays is "free:"

"While 'free music' indicates that you're free to play whatever you want to play and you're not following chord progressions, and there's no time, there's no this, no that...The way I've been playing free music, with my constituents, doesn't really follow those guidelines. When we play, it's very well put together, in actuality. We're not just blowing to blow; there's listening going on, there's concerted effort at construction and organization, at putting things together - at minute levels - that hardly go on in 'free music' anymore."

-Wikipedia (

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"Dr. Brian Willson is a professional musician, educator, author, and student of African Diaspora heritage in the Americas. He has been authorized by traditional intellectuals as a specialist in the Yoruba system of Ifa (Babalawo). He received his doctoral degree from City University of New York Graduate Center. As a percussionist/conductor/lecturer he has performed in over 25 countries, working with a wide variety of artists including Big Nick Nicholas, Katy Roberts, Morris Lang, Pauline Oliveros, Ivo Perelman, Rasul Siddik, the Mystery Brothers, Salim Washington, Brooklyn Philharmonic, Freddie MacGregor, Gloria Gaynor, Roberta Flack; along with numerous tours of the Broadway shows A Chorus Line, Evita, and Chess. His work is represented on over 15 recordings, DVDs, and television specials. He is endorsed by Paiste Cymbals, Evans Drumheads, Lang Percussion, and Regal tip drumsticks. He recently retired from Brooklyn College after 28 years of service as professor and Director of Concerts. In 2011 was he nominated as a trustee to the Board of Directors of Education Africa, USA. He is currently writing a book on Brazilian Candomble communities, and travels to Brazil regularly. He now directs his energies to family, Ifa studies, writing, and charitable endeavors."

-Brian Willson Website (

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track listing:

1. Introduction 1:55

2. Brush Groove 5:44

3. Ballad 3:32

4. Bahia 4:50

5. Unity 10:49
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"From The Mystery Brothers, here is a wonderful performance of drum concertos, written and performed by Brian Willson, the great drummer/percussionist/conductor, and fellow master drummer Jay Rosen. The production/recording is nothing short of amazing and pristine. Here's a prime example of how the drums are indeed a melodic instrument. Willson/Rosen explore the instrument's wide array of timbre's and colors, refreshingly different from the traditional and everyday presentation of this instrument, in a beautifully recorded and performed album. This is creativity, innovative drumming and music at its highest level showcasing advanced production, compositional, and technical drum skills."-Terry Silverlight

Related Categories of Interest:

Improvised Music
Free Improvisation
NY Downtown & Metropolitan Jazz/Improv
Percussion & Drums
Duo Recordings

Search for other titles on the label:
Not Two.

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