About Jim Shelley

     Jim Shelley is an American singer-songwriter, musician, writer, painter, and former high school teacher and football coach. Since the release of his first album, 12 SONGS, in 1983, Shelley has usually recorded his albums in his home studio on a four or eight track tape 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's music encompasses elements of everything from first-wave Brit-pop, '60s garage rock, folk and country to punk, hard rock and metal to electronica to sound collage and extreme noise.

     Shelley is a prolific writer, having released more than 500 songs on over forty records, most of them since 1989. He played a prominent role in the so-called lo-fi movement of the 1990s and early 2000s.

     Over the last couple of decades, Shelley has performed sporadically on the East Coast, mostly in or near his home town of Bridgewater, Virginia in the Shenandoah Valley, with various rock bands, including Book Of Proles, The Plague Dogs, agitprop The Karl Rove, Fear + Whiskey, and most notably the stylistically diverse Book Of Kills, the "live" version of which featured a series of constantly changing line-ups from 1994 through 2017.


     In 2012, Shelley published his autobiography, The Ballad Of Jim Shelley: My Life As A Failed Rock Star.

     In January of 2018, Shelley divulged plans to release the "Archive Project" consisting of most of his recorded output as well a number of previously unreleased live and studio performances.


     Jim continues to produce new music. While live shows have been few and far between, particularly over the past several years, there is always the chance that he will announce the scheduling of a rare performance, so check back regularly for the latest news on releases and upcoming gigs.

     Jim lives with his wife in Virginia.

"Jim Shelley belongs in the lo-fi pantheon. A handful of lost souls worship this guy."
-- Alternative Press
"Comparisons are an insult. The man is an original. One of America's great 'unknown' songsmiths."
-- DemoUniverse

"So much more real than most of the doodoo being squat out by record companies. This is, perhaps, because the idea isn't to sell product...but to produce truly quality music with integrity."
-- BabySue Magazine
"I don't know of another more passionate singer/songwriter in rock music today."
-- In The Underground
"Jim Shelley is one of America's greatest songwriters." -- Jim Santo