Tyrone Owusu Slater
Tyrone Owusu Slater hails from St. Vincent Grenadines, the homeland (Yurumein) of the Garifuna people, located in the south-eastern Caribbean. Owusu began his musical experience in the Starlift Steel Pan Movement of the 1970s. In 1980, he joined the Naked Roots Cultural Drumming Group where he began his drumming career, touring the Caribbean and participating in the World Expo 1986 in Canada. Since immigrating to the USA in 1991, Owusu has worked with many groups, organizations, and venues, both traditional and non-traditional, throughout the tri-state area and beyond. He has toured and recorded with Rock of Ages Reggae Band, Zena Foster Jazzspel Band, and jazz legend Ornet Coleman.
He is co-founder and program director of the Biko Transformation Center, located in Bushwick. His vision for the center is to create a home for cultural exchange and to preserve the Garifana music and language. Owusu shares his time and talents with community cultural organizations such as The African Folk Heritage Circle, Weusi Ensemble, The Rhythm Wizards, Central Brooklyn Jazz Consortium, Our Lady Victory Arts Project and Music Ministry, and the Afrigarifuna Jazz Ensemble, which took root at The Biko Center.
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