Born and raised in Humacao, Puerto Rico, Jose has been performing on percussion instruments since he was five years old. At age 11, he started 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 the 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 the United States.
Through the course of his life, Jose has had the opportunity to perform along renown artists such as Arturo Sandoval, Tito Puente, Marcos Barrientos, Meñique, Rico Monaco, Eve Evans, Gregg Bissonette, Giovanni Hidalgo, Gypsy Kings, Gerson Kelly, Martin Valverde, Nestor Torres, Danilo Montero, Bobby Cruz, Jose "Papo" Rivera, Charlene Stewart, Marconi, Made, “Steel Pan Virtuoso” Liam Teague, Joe Lovano, and many others. He had also performed at the Disney’s Animal Kingdom “Tarzan Rocks”, and “The Village Beatniks” shows, at the Universal Studios Florida “The I Love Lucy tribute show!” and many others. Jose currently between the United States and Cartago, Costa Rica where he performs, produces opening acts with his band Jose Rosa and Friends for artists such as Franco De Vita, does recordings and also teaches and prepares new upcoming artists on his Percussion Studio “Jose Rosa Percussion Studio”. In 2015, Jose Rosa was exalted to the Puerto Rico Music Hall of Fame for his contribution to the music in Puerto Rico.
He also leads his own percussion group called “Insolencia Rumbera”, his band "Jose Rosa and Friends" with whom he had recorded several albums. In addition, he can also be heard and seen in many radio ads and TV programs like 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 written several instructional books some of the titles are: Award-winning: "Beyond The Secret Hand / Mas Allá de la Mano Secreta", “Modern Tumbadoras: How to play congas” Vol. 1 and “Advance Latin Drumming Independence”, "New World Music History" and "The Art of Latin Drumming" published and distributed by Hal Leonard Corporation, the latter nominated for the 2013 Modern Drummer Readers Poll. His latest Instructional Videos: “The Contemporary Hand Drummer” (Available in You Tube) and coming soon 3 new books: “Advance Coordination for the Tumbadoras”, "Timbales, the history of the instrument that became the heartbeat of Latin Music" and “Extreme and Killer Coordination for the 21st Century Drummer" which will be published by Jose Rosa Music Publishing and distributed by Lulu Press.
Jose endorses Pearl Drums and Percussion, Paiste Cymbals, Remo Drum Heads, Pro-Mark Drum Sticks and Mallets, Purecussion Percussion, Pintech Electronic Percussion, Cymbag and Cympad.