Rudd's band consists of trombonists Steve Swell and Deborah Weizs, with Barry Altschul on drums, and Henry Schroy on bass.
This will be Rudd's third trip to Mali. In 2001 he recorded his MALIcool (Universal/Sunnyside), the first time that the trombone was integrated into the kora-based instrumentation of Malian music. Rudd's decision to bring a Trombone Shout Band to the Festival in the Desert has to do with the strength of the trombone sound over thousands of years, being resonant in just about any kind of environment, particularly out-of-doors," says Rudd. Rudd has long been inspired by the trombone shout band tradition of East Coast USA.
The repertoire will be a mixture of old and new jazz, blues, and originals. Roswell Rudd will also be performing with The Gangbe Brass Band of Benin with whom he performed at Joe's Pub in their NYC debut in Sept. 2002.
There will be participating groups from eight African countries. The artists from Mali will feature Salif Keita, Ali Farka Toure, and Habib Koite.
Participation of Roswell Rudd has been made possible in part through support from The Fund for U.S. Artists at International Festivals and Exhibitions, a public-private partnership of the National Endowment for the Arts, the U.S. Department of State, and The Rockefeller Foundation, with additional support from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, and administered by Arts International.