Frontman of the shock-rock band discusses regional identity and music in online lecture

Gwar bassist and lead vocalist Michael ‘Blothar’ Bishop recently delivered a TED Talk on regional identity and music.

The musician, also an academic at the University of Virginia, became frontman of the shock-rock band in August 2014 following the death of founding member Dave Brockie.

During Bishop’s TED Talk, a series of video lectures focussing on engaging ideas, he discusses the band’s connection to Richmond, Virginia and how the city’s history has played a part in the group’s music.

Bishop also enters the stage in full Gwar costume and skins the head of a man wearing a papier-mâché mask. Watch below.

Meanwhile, former Gwar member Vulvatron recently denied media reports that she was fired from the band for drinking too much.

The musician – real name Kim Dylla – was brought in as a member of Gwar in 2014 after Dave Brockie, aka Oderus Urungus, died of a heroin overdose.

“Yes, I drink beer. Almost every day. Find me a group of metal musicians who think that is weird,” Dylla wrote in a statement.

“No, I don’t perform incapacitated and never have. Yes, I can handle my shit. No, I don’t do drugs. Yes, I broke my rib and kept singing through the rest of the set and the crowd never noticed. No, I didn’t break it because I was drunk, I broke it because I elbow dropped the wrong part of the Mr Perfect costume trying to put on a good show.”

She added: “It sucks that this had to turn into a media shitstorm but when people say things about you publicly that you honestly had no idea were going on, it’s going to be expected you want to say something back. Anyway, never get famous – it sucks. I only just wanted to play music. If you have a serious band and would like to play some music, hit me up.”