The EarRegulars feature leader Jon-Erik Kellso on trumpet and Matt Munisteri on guitar and feature guest artists every week. The play swinging, melodic classic jazz, i.e. everything from New Orleans style through the tin pan alley classics, the swing era, and mainstream jazz.
They don't play half hour long solos, although it's not unusual for a song to last 10 minutes or more; they like to take our time and enjoy exploring ensemble improv', a conversational style. They approach traditional jazz in an open-minded, in-the-moment way.
This band often smiles and laughs (yes--even on stage!), and is not ashamed of this.
Jon played in Matt Munisteri's band called Brock Mumford at the Ear Inn for years, first Monday of the month, midnight to 3am.
After the Cajun closed in 2006, Matt suggested to Victor at the Ear that Kellso could start a weekly traditional jazz gig there with him, during more normal, earlier hours, and Victor convinced the owner to give it a try. They wanted to help fill the gap in the traditional jazz scene in NYC that had opened up.
Sundays were a slow night, so they were given that slot, 8-11pm. They started in June of 2007 as a trio, but soon business picked up quite a bit, and they were upgraded to a quartet.
Jon and Matt decided from the beginning that they'd be the only regular EarRegulars, and that they'd have various guest artists each week on bass, and usually another horn, such as a clarinet, sax, or trombone. One will find the swingingest players in NYC playing with them, as well as the best from all over the world guesting when in town.
It didn't take long to catch on, and now they pack 'em in, so it's best to get here early to claim a good spot near the band.
The band has been blessed with some great press.
They were featured in a Will Friedwald article in the Wall Street Journal: http://on.wsj.com/fYum6c .
Nate Chinen included The EarRegulars in his February/March 2011 JazzTimes article about the 10 most memorable performances he saw in 2010: http://jazztimes.com/articles/26975-2010-the-year-in-gigs .
Mr. Chinen also featured the EarRegulars in a New York Times article:http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/27/arts/music/27kellso.html?ref=music
Michael Steinman has written numerous blogs about them and various fun nights at the Ear http://jazzlives.wordpress.com/2012/05/07/too-good-to-ignore-the-earregulars-at-the-ear-inn-march-25-2012/