Born and raised in Humacao, Puerto Rico, Jose has been performing on percussion instruments since he was five years old. At age 11, he began formal music lessons with Professor Jose “Tito” Rivera at the Escuela Libre De Música de Humacao. At 12 years of age, Jose started performing with Humacao Symphonic Band under the direction of Professor German Peña Plaza. With the Humacao Symphonic Band, Jose traveled to Venezuela, New York, Costa Rica, Virgin Islands and Dominican Republic. At age 14, Jose received formal percussion lessons from Professor Jose "Pepe" Torres at the Escuela Libre de Música de Caguas. Under Torres direction, Jose performed with the Puerto Rico Symphony Orchestra, Puerto Rico State Band, and also with a variety of local bands. By the age of 17, Jose was accepted into the Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music where he studied percussion with Professor Jose Alicea. Under Alicea's direction, Jose played for the America Youth Symphony Orchestra based in San Juan, Puerto Rico. In 1994, Jose moved to Miami, where he attended the University of Miami and Florida International University.
Throughout the course of his life, Jose has had the opportunity to perform with renowned artists such as Arturo Sandoval, Tito Puente, Marcos Barrientos, Gerson Kelly, Danilo Montero, Mike Orta, Bobby Cruz Jose "Papo" Rivera and “Steel Pan virtuoso” Liam Teague. He currently tours with singer Martin Valverde. He has also performed at Disney’s Animal Kingdom “Tarzan Rocks” and “The Village Beatniks” shows and at Universal Studios Florida’s “The I Love Lucy tribute show!”, among many others. Jose divides his time between Puerto rico and San Jose, Costa Rica where the “Contemporary Drums and Percussion Seminar” is held.
He also leads his own percussion group called “Insolencia Rumbera” and his Latin jazz band "Jose Rosa and Friends". In addition, he can also be heard and seen in many radio ads and TV programs including the syndicated PBS program “Jazz Then and Now” and also on the Travel channel in the program "The making of Disney's Animal Kingdom".
He has also co-written several instructional books with his longtime friend, Professor Hector”Pocho” Neciosup. Among the titles are the award-winning: "Beyond The Secret Hand / Mas alla de la Mano Secreta", “The Contemporary Hand Drummer” and “The Art of Latin Drumming” (Nominated for the 2013 Modern Drummer Readers Poll as book of the year), published and distributed by Hal Leonard Corporation. Jose recently published a music history book with Hal Leonard Corporation entitled: “New World Music Resource Guide” and is already receiving great reviews. Jose is a very accomplished educator. His “Contemporary Drums and Percussion Camp” is held every year at the University of Central Florida in Orlando. Hundreds of students come from all over the world to study at the camp with Jose Rosa and Hector “Pocho” Neciosup. Currently, Jose directs “Contemporary Drums and Percussion Seminar Latin America” in collaboration with many universities through Latin America. “Contemporary Drums and Percussion Seminar” is a 36-month program that prepares students to start a music career at a major university.
Jose is an active member of the Percussive Arts Society, ASCAP, MENC, The Jazz Education Network, International Association of Music Educators, and the Christian Educators Association International. Jose endorses Pearl Drums and Percussion, Paiste Cymbals, Pro-Mark Drumsticks, Pintech Electronic Percussion, Lento Drum Gloves, Phat Foot Accessories, Offworld Practice Pads, Duallist Bass Drum Pedals, Treeworks Chimes, Gruv Gear and Remo Drumheads.