Lee Mixashawn Rozie

Lee Mixashawn Rozie is a Jazz Musician, Educator and ‘The Wave Artist’. He has a fabulous take on the world in terms of waves from light speeds, to sound, to the slow waves of the mountains, to the sea that connects the world and brought colonialism. His take as an indigenous American, to Cornish, to African roots and looking at identity.

In his own words:

“Lee Mixashawn Rozie has been a practicing multi-disciplinary and internationally acclaimed Jazz artist for the past three decades. Mr. Rozie holds a degree in History and Ethnomusicology from Trinity College and is equally at home in academic and cultural settings. Beginning from the point of Indigenous artist, using ancient cultural principles, maritime arts and historical data, both written and oral, he has developed a system of “Hemispheric Principles” to inform and guide his artform, more directly referred to as “Wave Art”: sonic, aquatic percussive and harmonic. Mixashawn offers musical performance and educational workshops on Indigenous music traditional and contemporary, as well as original, workshops that utilize his extensive experience as performer, Indigenous artist and educator to inspire creativity and natural expression for all ages.”

He’s a descendant of the ‘exquisite violinist’ and composer, Joseph Antonio Emidy who was abandoned in Falmouth, Cornwall, England in 1799. He had been pressganged by Admiral Sir Edward Pellew from Lisbon, when Pellew heard him play as the virtuoso violinist in the Lisbon Opera. Pellew was the grandson of Humphrey Pellew, who built half of Flushing on his wealth gained from enslaved Africans who worked his tobacco plantation in Maryland.[1] Born in Guinea in 1775, Emidy had been enslaved by Portuguese slave traders and recognised for his musical talent he was given a violin and taught to play it. Emidy went on to set up and lead the Truro Philharmonic Orchestra.[2]

Thanks to Marjorie A Emidy who traced her ancestors and her distant cousins. She cam to Falmouth in 1999, to bicentenary of Joseph Emidy’s arrival in Falmouth. A plaque for Joseph Emidy was placed in the local King Charles Church of England church and the Tunde Jegede Ensemble put on a performance.[3]

This is a wonderful interview with Lee Mixashawn Rozie:

And here with some of his more traditional jazz music:

And here spanning 2 decades as a musician and educator:

Read more

Mixashawn has some lovely posts in his Facebook, you might want to listen to Didgeridoo Meets Orchestra or Mixashawn Trio in Concert late last year

Or see the Lee Mixashawn Rozie website


[1] See Susan Gay’s book Old Falmouth page 122 https://archive.org/details/oldfalmouth00gays/page/122/mode/2up?q=humphrey+pellew and in Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_Pellew,_1st_Viscount_Exmouth

[2] Joseph Antonio Emidy in Black History Bootleg https://black-history-bootleg.org/joseph-antonio-emidy/

[3] Tunde Jegede website http://www.tundejegede.org/ and Emidy: He Who Dared Dream http://www.tundejegede.org/emidy-he-who-dared-to-dream/

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