Don Rosler: Lyricist/Songwriter/Producer

Here's a whole bunch of songs for all sorts of projects/albums/commissions, etc.

And here's some reviews from a few specific ones:

Don Rosler, songwriter/producer.  


        BOBBY McFERRIN: VOCAbuLarieS      






Or fully stream:



“...ingeniously conceived...”  Andy Propst, TheaterMania

  “***** (5 out of 5 stars)!  Spottiswoode is also one of the guest vocalists   on the beautiful album that New York producer, composer and owner Don Rosler recently created under the name “Rosler’s Recording Booth.” Mostly known as one of the driving forces behind Bobby McFerrin’s masterpiece “VOCAbuLarieS,” which debuted last year, Rosler, with the help of lesser known but not less talented singers, goes down an extraordinarily beautiful path in which (restrained) orchestral pop melts together  with emotional   singer/songwriter music. It delivers the highly exceptional and moving album that unites the best of Randy Newman and Nino Rota, and every time we play it we can’t wait to hear what Don Rosler has to offer us next. Music of this level is so rare that you want to give it to your friends as a gift because it is an experience that needsto be shared immediately.”  

                        Pieter Wijnstekers/Heaven Magazine



 "The song is a valentine to baseball and Bauer, for sure, but also about connection: the way all those lonely voices reach out on local sports radio in the wee hours when they should be fast asleep."

Ken Plutnicki, New York Times



"Rosler has added another off-ramp on the Great American Songbook highway. Rosler's Recording Booth is a concept album that should find its way to the desk of Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner. There is a great TV series in these stories and the soundtrack has been taken care of.”                                                                                           Hans Werksman, Here Comes The Flood

 "Darkly surreal and often quirkily charming, Rosler’s Recording Booth is one of the most original album concepts in recent months.....You’ve probably at least heard of the hit single, Doris From Rego Park, sung by Rosler himself – Rosler sings to her gently over a hypnotic, new wave pop-tinged keyboard lullaby, almost as one would to a child. As sympathetic a portrait as Rosler paints, it evokes a crushing loneliness. The rest of the album ranges from upbeat to downright haunting. Spottiswoode lends his rich, single-malt baritone to two cuts....Tam Lin sings a pensive 6/8 ballad, a childhood reminiscence with Irish tinges. Terry Radigan takes over the mic on a jauntily creepy circus tune, an understatedly chilling account of homeless through a little girl’s eyes, and a quietly optimistic wartime message home from a young woman to her family....Kathena Bryant brings a towering, soulful presence to the September song Where I’ve Been, What I’ve Done, Jeremy Sisto sings a broodingly psychedelic criminal’s tale, and Rosler himself leads the choir through a deftly orchestrated reminiscence…of singing in a choir." Lucid Culture


Rosler’s Recording Booth -- This concept CD that reminds me of an era of songwriting when Van Dyke Parks, Harry Nilsson, and Randy Newman were just launching their careers. It features a number of guest vocalists breathing life into 16 of Don Rosler's sumptuous songs. My favorite is this simple, acoustic guitar folk-pop ballad [“First I Draw The Sun”] featuring the sweet, clear-throated vocals of N.Y.C.-based singer Tamara Hey." Dusty Wright, Culture Clash

"Very impressed with the interweaving of the authentic coin-op recordings with the new songs. a theatrical production...the music is in keeping with such a performance style, and the nostagic theme wafts throuhj the entire collection."   Alan Dein, BBC Radio

                                                  “Rosler has interesting ideas about orchestration....So there are surprising combinations of instruments and tonalities, but it all works beautifully. Spottiswoode’s take on Where Do I Come In? brings it all together for me. The arrangement here is startling, with sudden shifts in mood andtonality....There are many other fine performances on this album. I want to know more about Spottiswoode, and also about Terry Radigan, whocontributes four wonderfully varied performances here. Other listeners will find other gems as well.”  Darius Rips,  Oliver di Place Blog


       “This recording is less a hilarious work of audio/musical theater than a touchingly poetic, expansively novelistic one. Autobiographical, fictionalized, concerned with memory and the elusiveness of time past. Don Rosler's lyrics tell the story ["Life is but a dream, I know/Have you seen that boat we used to row?"] indivisibly from his intricate, many-leveled arrangements of melodic, poignant musical compositions. Oh yeah, there's humor, there's everything -- the album is elaborately detailed, creates a world. It flows seamlessly, while rewarding attention. It's a trip." Howard Mandel/Jazz Beyond Jazz/

  "The great thing about Rosler is that he finds the universal truth through the colorful details, like a finely etched painting. And he's found a variety of voices for his canvas."   Kevin Scott Hall, Edge

“Highlights come from the artists Spottiswoode, with tracks like “Where Do I come in?” and actor Jeremy Sisto in his recorded music debut on “Halfway Honest Living.” .... Rosler’s Recording Booth is a unique vision unlike anything else I’ve heard this year.”  EA's Brain





Rosler's Recording Booth" No. 10 on Eric Van Domburg Scipio’s Top Ten Rock/Pop List 2011: Heaven Magazine (The Netherlands): Click here:

“Hard Goodbye” (Rosler, Margolis) performed by John Margolis, featured on Andy Propst (Theatermania)’s last-minute mixes: 




Bobby McFerrin: Vocabularies (featuring Roger Treece).  To fully stream these compositions:

  "...a formidable, magnificent album in which vocal music is taken up and lifted into a  new, brilliant and surprising, amazing sphere. .... This virtual choir, besides, was formed by singers brought together from different genres and nationalities, and so we find elements of Eastern European, Central Asian, Middle Eastern and Western classical music, along with choral-sacred echoes, African rhythms and some tinges of pop effusiveness. Odd meters, exotic percussion (played by percussionist Alex Acuña) and lyrics sung in the most varied –and strange– tongues, such as Latin, Italian, Sanskrit, Mandarin, Japanese, French, Arabic, Hebrew, English and Gaelic, give form to this collection of strange, moving songs, building up, in short, a unique masterpiece"

    Miguel Bronfman, Buenos Aires Herald

“There is purity and bliss in the music as well as in the lyrics that were written by Don Rosler."  Jean-Claude Elias, Jordan Times

 "...spiritually uplifting, utterly beguiling and deeply groovy . . ." – Ron Adams, The Sunday Herald. Scotland

 "easily McFerrin´s finest moment on record as well as his most ambitious"– Thom Jurek, All Music Guide

"a glimpse into the future of music in the 21st century . . . VOCAbularies is Bobby McFerrin´s masterpiece" – Brian Whistler, Audiophile Audition

"...a unique masterpiece . . .don’t miss it." – The Buenos Aires Herald

"rises like a melodious Tower of Babel, exalting the incomparable beauty of universal harmony." – Christopher Loudon, Jazz Times

"the human voice in its purest incarnation . . . a symphonic vocal poem of oceanic purity." – Louis Séguin, Liberacion Paris

"dream world stuff . . .delicate and complex" – Rich Scheinin, The San Jose Mercury News

"one of the great discs, so far, of 2010 . . . . the most extraordinary disc Bobby McFerrin has ever made" – Jeff Simon, The Buffalo News

"...a veritable symphony of voices" – People Magazine

"...a formidable, magnificent album in which vocal music is taken up and lifted into a  new, brilliant and surprising, amazing sphere."

 "... a veritable symphony of voices"

     People Magazine

"In collaboration with composer/arranger/producer Roger Treece, the album features over 50 different singers, recorded one at a time and in small groups to create a virtual choir made up of over 1,400 vocal tracks....



To fully stream some selections:


                                                           Read Jim Dwyer's NY Times feature

Winner of the JP Folks Founders "Song of the Year" Award (over 110,000 other entries) and "CD of the Year'" winner. 

Two songs from this CD have already been prominently featured in films, including one on Showtime/HBO ("Tanta Belleza", played in full (end credit) in the HBO/Cinemax film "The Kidnapping of Ingrid Bettencourt"." 


In a class of its own. Brilliant all the way! Sometimes funny, often heart breaking, always brilliant, Christine's Refrigerator is a welcome reminder that high art and popular song form can be great bedfellows. John Margolis has put together a collection of songs that are so fresh and original, I feel like my ears just received a big jolt of innocence. Superb all the way!

   Alain Mallet, producer/musician, Jonatha Brooke


“Christine’s Refrigerator” is filled with lovely, soulful, delicious art. This is a marvelous CD. Besides John’s remarkable vocals, every song was a miniature voyage to someplace I’d never been before. “Christine’s Refrigerator” is filled with lovely, soulful, delicious art."

    Hugh Prestwood, Grammy-award winning songwriter/number one hits for Trisha Yearwood, Randy Travis & more.


"Experiencing "Christine's Refrigerator" is one great adventure. These songs tell amazing stories, in the music as well as the lyrics. At once accessible and totally original, heart-felt and daring, romantic but unwearily world-wise, all conveyed with Margolis' grittily elegant voice. This is the 1st CD I play my friends to take them on a great adventure."

   Bob Telson, Grammy-award/Tony-award nominated composer/songwriter (Baghdad Cafe/Gospel at Colonus)




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