“A spiritual cousin to Paul Simon’s Graceland” –Seven Days
From the front-lines at Standing Rock to the archaic streets of Jerusalem to the dunes of the Sahel Desert all the way to Carnegie Hall, music has been the thread and source of strength for Billy Wylder. The band features Avi Salloway from Bombino/Hey Mama/Avi & Celia joined by an inspired cast of top-notch musicians who have performed in over twenty five countries. Over the last three years, Salloway has toured the globe, performing with Bombino, the Tuareg guitar virtuoso from Niger, Africa and is now bringing new and old songs to life with the Wylder family.
Billy Wylder, like their peers, the David Wax Museum and Rubblebucket, bring sounds from around the globe to meld with their American roots, taking the listener on a journey from bayou to borough, desert to dreamland. Wylder’s on a soul journey, singing songs with the people he meets, songs of love and adventure, filled by the color of his footsteps.
In the heat of the Arab Spring, Avi traveled to Israel and Palestine to work on an ethnographic music and dialogue project with young Arab and Jewish artists. Through his inspiration from the experience, new songs began to take form and the idea of Billy Wylder was born. The band recorded Sand & Gold with the help of The Low Anthem and Dan Cardinal in Providence, RI and is now on the road in America, building the “Wylder family” of fans from town to town.
Billy Wylder has toured extensively throughout the United States, performing and collaborating with renowned artists including Jack Johnson, Bombino, The Preservation Hall Jazz Band, David Longstreth (Dirty Projectors), The Low Anthem, and Pete Seeger. Billy Wylder includes Rob Flax (fiddle, synthesizer, vocals), Lucy Clifford (bass), Zamar Odongo (drums, vocals), and Avi Salloway (lead vocals, guitar, harmonica). The members of Billy Wylder are all charismatic artists and educators who have taught and performed in the Middle East, China, Europe, Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, North America and the Caribbean including concerts at the Coachella Music & Arts Festival, Newport Folk Festival, New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, Montreal Jazz Fest, Carnegie Hall, and Lincoln Center.
“[Salloway’s] traveled the globe, teaching in the Middle East and absorbing myriad worldly musical influences. All of which inform his new project, Billy Wylder, which fuses disparate styles, from worldbeat to art rock, with his Americana roots.” –Seven Days