About Doan Brian Roessler

_MG_0521_1I’m a Buddhist priest, bassist, educator, and composer.

I began my studies of Buddhism with Shohaku Okumura Roshi in 1994 and was ordained in 2013. While I continue to practice and study under Okumura Roshi’s guidance, I also host zazen practice and dharma study at my studio (Leaf of Grass) in the Midway neighborhood of St. Paul. You can find more information on those activities at the Leaf of Grass Zen website.

I spent my entire life loving, playing, and studying music. I began taking lessons on our family’s electric organ when I was young, and soon switched to the guitar in hopes of becoming Jimmy Page some day. Since that didn’t play out I moved from guitar to electric bass. Eventually I began playing the double bass and fell in love. In 2002 my family and I relocated to Paris so I could study with François Rabbath. I have had the honor of working with François ever since. He awarded me the Rabbath Institute’s Teaching Diploma in 2009.

I have had incredibly generous teachers through my life. It is clear to me that through music and community we can change the world. I carry that attitude into my teaching whether I’m working with young children, adults, or adolescents. In 2013 I founded the annual Twin Cities Bass Camp and also had the great honor of joining the faculty at the Kansas City Bass Workshop.

I’ve performed and recorded with a wide variety of the greatest musicians in the world, among them Nathan Hanson, Didier Petit, Dan Navarro, Peter Hennig, Anthony Cox, Denis Colin, Pablo Cueco, Erik Fratzke, Tony Hymas, Michael Zerang, Marc Anderson, Mirtha Pozzi, Jim Anton, Peter Leggett, Sowah Mensah, and Kip Jones.

The ensembles I play with most regularly are a duo with saxophonist Nathan Hanson and Fantastic Merlins. Both groups have released several recordings to critical acclaim and have had the good fortune of playing throughout the United States and France. Some notable venues I’ve played with these groups and others include the Atlantique Jazz Festival (Brest), L’Arrosoir (Chalon sur Saône), Lizieres, Angora (Paris), Elastic (Chicago), Dialect (Charlotte), Ajmi (Avignon), Sons d’Hiver (Paris), and Studio Z (St. Paul).

I’ve composed music for myself and many others including choreographer Sarah Hauss, Fantastic Merlins, and for the French documentary films Aller Simple and Hubert Nyssen – a livre ouvert.