Jim Shelley (b. February 29, 1952) is an American singer-songwriter, musician, poet, painter, and former high school teacher. Since the release of his first album, 12 Songs, in 1979, Shelley has usually recorded his albums in his home studio on a four or eight track machine, more often than not performing all the instrumental and vocal parts himself, though in recent years he has employed a full band on a number of occasions. Shelley is a relatively prolific writer, having released more than 500 songs on over forty records, most of them since 1989. He played a prominent role in the 1990s lo-fi music scene. Over the last couple decades, Shelley has performed live a hundred or so times on the East Coast, mostly in or near his home town of Harrisonburg, Virginia, with various rock bands under the names of Book of Proles, The Plague Dogs, The Karl Rove, Fear + Whiskey, and most famously, Book Of Kills. On 10 February 2010, Shelley announced on the official band web page, that he was disbanding Book Of Kills "forever", though he left open the possibility that the group might play an occasional benefit in the future. A month later, 13 March 2010, the group performed one final time at the Little Grill in Harrisonburg, the venue where they delivered their first live show in 1994. In early 2010, Shelley created a new, more improvisational group called Fear + Whiskey. Jim lives with his wife, Mary Lou, in Bridgewater, Virginia. He has two children, Christian and Daniel, and a dog, Sadie.
Where to find Jim Shelley online
The Ballad Of Jim Shelley: My Life As A Failed Rock Star
by Jim Shelley
The Ballad Of Jim Shelley is a quirky, passionate chronicle of the rock and roll adventures of a small town misfit, by a self-proclaimed “failed rock star” whom critic Jim Santo called “one of America's great 'unknown' songsmiths”, Splendid magazine labeled “a cult hero”, and of whom Alternative Press wrote, “Jim Shelley belongs in the lo-fi pantheon...a handful of lost souls worship this guy.”
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