Former Dead Drummer Goes Native

May 6 [12:00 EST] -- Mickey Hart will join various U.S. government dignitaries and Native American leaders May 23 on the Mall in Washington to celebrate American Indian veterans of the Armed Forces.

The former Grateful Dead drummer, half of the percussion duo dubbed the Rhythm Devils with Bill Kruetzmann, is also marking the release of a CD compilation called "American Warriors: Songs of Native American Veterans," which he co-produced along with Tom Vennum of the Smithsonian Institution.

Hart is an ethnomusicologist who routinely records or produces indigenous music, largely rhythmic, from around the world. His 1991 recording of "Planet Drum" won a Grammy in the World Music category. He's also written two books dealing with the history and mythology of rhythm. Hart has a live version of Planet Drum touring with this summer's Further Festival which also features the Black Crows, moe, Bruce Hornsby and former Dead mate Bob Weir.