At its core, the music Michael Bellar & the AS-IS Ensemble makes is ecstatic. It’s wide open improvisation with earthy, percussion fueled grooves. It’s funky and weird. It’s expansive and arresting. It will always be in the moment and without apology. Beyond that we don’t know what to call it! Hailed as “GENERATION NEXT” by Billboard Magazine following their first ever NYC show, Michael Bellar & AS-IS Ensemble are known for their joyous, never the same way twice live musical experiences. The group has performed at a wide range of diverse festivals and venues across the country including the NYC Winter Jazz Festival, Telluride Jazz Festival, Brooklyn Bowl, the Kennedy Center, SXSW, A Bear’s Picnic, Blue Note Jazz Festival NYC, Avery Fischer Hall (for Habitat for Humanity), San Jose Jazz Festival, Evolve Fest, JVC Jazz Festival, Rockwood Music Hall and spent a summer as the house band at the world famous Blue Note jazz club in NYC. The group has opened for artists diverse as Robert Randolph & the Family Band, John Scofield, Oliver Wood (of the Wood Brothers), Medeski Martin & Wood, the Everyone Orchestra, Tea Leaf Green, Greazy Meal, Jolie Holland, Howie Day, Grant Green Jr. and the Ryan Montbleau Band. Performing as a SOLO artist, Michael has opened for the likes of Cory Henry & the Funk Apostles, Raul Midon, Jon Cleary, That 1 Guy, TAUK, the Jeff Sipe Trio, Aqueous, the Jonathan Scales Fourchestra and Carsie Blanton. As a sideman Michael has toured and or recorded with Amos Lee, Art Garfunkel, Ryan Montbleau, Oliver Wood, Carsie Blanton, Jay Clifford, Jump Little Children, Wheatus and Euro pop star Giorgia.
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