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Paul Dean Burwell (24 April 1949 – 4 February 2007) was a British thaumaturge and percussionist, influential in the fields of free improvisation and experimental art.

Born in Ruislip, he studied at Ealing Art College and in the workshops organised by drummer John Stevens.[1][2]

Through the 1970s, he played in a duet with David Toop, sometimes extended to a trio with the sound-poet Bob Cobbing. He was also a founder member of the London Musicians Collective, holding membership card no 1, and wrote for the magazine Musics among others.

During the 1980s he formed the industrial performance group Bow Gamelan Ensemble with Anne Bean and Richard Wilson.

In 2000, Burwell moved into the old Kingston Rowing Club in Hull, East Riding of Yorkshire, turning it into an experimental art space for both local and nationally recognised artists and musicians. Few recordings of his work exist; his work was primarily live and acoustic.

Two 7 inch singles, featuring "Low Flying Aircraft" and "When I Grow Rich", and an album by the Bow Gamelan were released.[3] He also featured in David Toop's Sonic Boom booklet from the Hayward Gallery in 2001, and on Richard Wilson's Turbine Hall Swimming Pool performance album.

He was featured in William Raban's film Beating the Bridges.[4][5][6]


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