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He attended graduate school at the Florida State Universtity School of Music studying ethnomusicology. He founded and directed the New World Ensemble. As director of this ensemble he was responsible for holding several artists in residence, including George Lewis, Richard Teitelbaum, Wadada Leo Smith, Davey Williams, Derek Bailey, Ladonna Smith, Shaking Ray Levis and Lawrence "Butch" Morris. The group also collaborated with several other great musicians including Kazue Sawai, Jill Burton, Gustavo Matamoros, Scott Walton, David Durant and Dana Reason. The New World Ensemble continues today.
Since 1995, Gelb has been performing nationally and internationally as a soloist and in ensembles. Performance highlights include the World Shakuhachi Festival, Lincoln Center, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (San Francisco), Mills College (Oakland), Knitting Factory (New York), Session House (Tokyo), Tiara Koto Concert Hall (Tokyo) Munster Neue Musik Festival (Germany), Earshot Jazz Festival (Seattle), Music Gallery (Toronto), Center For New Music and Audio Technologies (Berkeley), Gainesville Jazz Festival, Subtropics New Music Festival (Miami), University Of California SanDiego, Bard College, Stetson College, Rollins College, University of Vermont, and Earlham College and two appaerances as guest soloist with the Seattle Creative Orchestra.
Gelb's current projects include The Space Between (a trio with accordionist Pauline Oliveros and pianist Dana Reason), duets with interactive electronics composer Chris Brown, a trio with violinist Carla Kihlstedt and cellist Hugh Livingston. Other musicians with whom he frequently collaborates are koto master Shoko Hikage, multi instrumentalist Joe McPhee, and synthesizer player Tim Perkis.