Bob Moses (musician)

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Bob Moses
Birth nameRobert Laurence Moses
Also known asRa-Kalam Bob Moses
Born (1948-01-28) January 28, 1948 (age 73)
New York City, U.S.
GenresJazz, avant-garde jazz
Years active1964–present
Associated actsThe Free Spirits, Gary Burton, Tisziji Munoz

Bob Moses (born January 28, 1948) is an American jazz drummer.


Moses played with Roland Kirk in 1964–65 while he was still a teenager. In 1966 he and Larry Coryell formed The Free Spirits, a jazz fusion ensemble, and from 1967 to 1969 he played in Gary Burton's quartet. He played on the landmark 1967 Burton album A Genuine Tong Funeral, but due to creative disputes with the album's composer Carla Bley the drummer was credited as "Lonesome Dragon".[1] Moses and Bley would later reconcile and he became a vocal booster for her music.

Moses also recorded with Burton in the 1970s, in addition to work with Dave Liebman/Open Sky, Pat Metheny, Mike Gibbs, Hal Galper, Gil Goldstein, Steve Swallow, Steve Kuhn/Sheila Jordan (from 1979 to 1982), George Gruntz, and Emily Remler (from 1983 to 1984). In the early 1970s he was a member of Compost with Harold Vick, Jumma Santos, Jack Gregg [fr] and Jack DeJohnette.

His first release was in 1968's Love Animal. His second release as a leader was 1973's Bittersuite in the Ozone. His records for Gramavision in the 1980s were critically acclaimed.[citation needed]

He is also the author of the drum method book Drum Wisdom.[2]

Moses performs alongside John Lockwood, Don Pate, and John Medeski with guitarist Tisziji Muñoz and teaches at New England Conservatory.


As leader[edit]

  • Bittersuite in the Ozone (Mozown, 1975)
  • Tributaries with Richard Sussman, Andy LaVerne (Inner City, 1979)
  • Family (Sutra, 1980)
  • When Elephants Dream of Music (Gramavision, 1983)
  • Visit with the Great Spirit (Gramavision, 1984)
  • The Story of Moses (Gramavision, 1987)
  • Drumming Birds with Billy Martin (ITM, 1987)
  • Wheels of Colored Light (Open Minds, 1992)
  • Time Stood Still (Gramavision, 1994)
  • Devotion (Soul Note, 1996)
  • Love Everlasting with Tisziji Muñoz (Amulet, 1999)
  • Nishoma (Grapeshot, 2000)
  • Love Animal (Amulet, 2003)
  • Meditation On Grace with Michel Lambert (FMR, 2008)
  • Father's Day B'hash (Sunnyside, 2009)
  • The Illuminated Heart (Ra-Kalam, 2012)
  • Ecstatic Weanderings with Greg Burk (Jazzwerkstatt, 2012)
  • Ultra Minor with Jon Catler (FreeNote, 2018)

With Compost

As sideman[edit]

With Gary Burton

With Michael Gibbs

  • In the Public Interest (Polydor, 1974)
  • Directs the Only Chrome-Waterfall Orchestra (Bronze, 1975)
  • Big Music (Venture, 1988)
  • By the Way (Ah Um, 1993)

With Steve Kuhn

With Dave Liebman

  • Drum Ode (ECM, 1975)
  • Homage to John Coltrane (Owl, 1987)
  • Spirit Renewed (Owl, 1991)

With Steve Marcus

  • Tomorrow Never Knows (Vortex, 1968)
  • Count's Rock Band (Vortex, 1969)
  • The Lord's Prayer (Vortex, 1969)

With Tisziji Muñoz

  • The Paradox of Independence (Anami Music, 2014)
  • When Coltrane Calls! Session 3: Living Immortality (Anami Music, 2015)
  • Scream of Ensoundment (Anami Music, 2017)

With others


  1. ^ Ethan Iverson, A Lifetime of Carla Bley, The New Yorker, May 13, 2018
  2. ^ Moses, Bob; Mattingly, Rick (1984). Drum Wisdom. Modern Drummer.