Michael Bishop (bassist)

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Michael Bishop (born September 7, 1968) is an American musician.

Life and career[edit]

He attended Thomas Dale High School in Chester, Virginia. Most notably, he was the bass guitarist and, after a 20-year hiatus, is currently the lead vocalist for the American heavy metal band Gwar.[1] Bishop's first band was the Hopewell, VA-based hardcore outfit The Guilty. As a member of Gwar, he was the first to play the role of "Beefcake the Mighty".[2] The name of Beefcake was taken from Bishop's nickname during his punk years. Bishop was the bassist and lead vocalist for Kepone from 1991 through the band's breakup in 1997. All three members of Kepone later performed together again as American Grizzly until that band's breakup in 2005. He played with the Misery Brothers, a country/soul band local to Charlottesville, Virginia from 2007 to 2009.[3][4][5]

Bishop earned a Ph.D. and doctorate in music from UVA in 2012 and taught writing and topics in American music history at the university, specializing in popular music ethnography and performance studies.[6]

Bishop remains an active musician, performing with Sarah White and the Pearls.[7] Since 2011, Kepone has reunited to play occasional shows, although it remains unknown if the band will create any new music. Outside of performing Bishop:

  • teaches undergraduate courses in American music history and writing at the University of Virginia;
  • is the Learning Strategist and Lead Technical Writer at education technology company Interfolio

As of August 2014, Bishop is the lead vocalist for Gwar as a new character Blothar, replacing the late singer Dave Brockie in Gwar's fall tour and 30th anniversary tour.




  1. ^ Gwar
  2. ^ Huey, Steve. "Biography: GWAR". Allmusic. Retrieved May 31, 2010. 
  3. ^ "McIntire Department of Music Newsletter". University of Virginia. Retrieved July 31, 2012. 
  4. ^ "Misery Brothers". Myspace. Retrieved February 9, 2009. 
  5. ^ "Friday". Nailgun: A Central Virginia Music Blog. Nailgun Media. Retrieved July 31, 2012. 
  6. ^ TEDx. "MEET OUR SPEAKERS". TEDx RVA. Retrieved 13 August 2015. 
  7. ^ "Sarah White". Sonicbids. Retrieved July 31, 2012.