Jim Shelley & Book Of Kills

Book of Kills
06/29/2017
Jim Shelley

Story

From June 29, 2017. A truly manic version of "Killing Time Again". Garfield Banks on drums; George Nipe III on bass/vocals; me on guitar/vocals.

Book of Kills
11/22/2013
Jim Shelley

Story

Former BOK members Casey and Jane Firkin (guitars & vocals), and George Nipe III (bass & vocal) joined forces with Jim and Shagwuf drummer Pablo Olivieri for three well-received shows in late 2013 and early 2014. This cut, which originally appeared on the 2008 album THIS IS YOUR BOOK OF KILLS, comes from the second show at the now defunct The Attic in Luray, Virginia. By the way, I added a brief instrumental bridge for the live version. Delightfully sloppy goodness.

Fear + Whiskey
11/22/2016
Jim Shelley

Story

I'll say it again: Fear + Whiskey was an under-appreciated band. At least the Zack Simpson, Amy Bugg, Jim Shelley (+ George Nipe III towards the end of the group's run) line-up was. Here's a relatively rare live version of "Carry Me" from March 1, 2012, the debut of the Simpson/Bugg/Shelley version. I'm still amazed that we pulled off a two-hour live radio show after having practiced together less than a month into the band's existence. Let me reiterate: "Carry Me" is not an easy song for a trio to pull off, but we did. Somehow we did. Enjoy.

And if you enjoy listening to these rare performances, why not take a few moments to stream some BOK on your phone or computer or whatever electronic device you prefer? If you're feeling particularly charitable, download a song or two! And then get on the phone and tell a friend about bookofkills.com and Book of Kills music. You'll feel good about yourself if you do.

 

Book of Kills
01/25/2002
Jim Shelley

Story

From January 25, 2002, this is a pretty raging version of "Abandoned" with the faithful rowdy crowd that always jammed into that tiny venue back in the early 2000s to see us. Dubbed from an old video tape, the sound is pretty bad, but it has been remastered and partially "fixed" (it suffered from some horrendous drop-outs). Worth having if you're a true believer. Billy Bird - bass/vocal; Jane Firkin - guitar/vocal; Randy Simpson - lead guitar/vocal; Casey Firkin - drums/vocal; Jim Shelley - vocal/guitar.

Jim Shelley, Amy Bugg, Dusty Bugg & George Nipe III
08/16/2013
Traditional with Additional Lyrics by Jim Shelley

Story

Here's a previously unreleased live performance of "Hold the Wind" (which originally showed up on 1991's FOR THE GOOD OF THE CAUSE) by Amy Bugg (bass/vocal), Jim Shelley (lead guitar/back vocal), Dustin Bugg (drums), and George Nipe III (guitar). This was probably only the second or third time Dusty had played drums on this song. We only practiced twice together, this the day before this make-shift line-up played its one and only "show". Rough but interesting considering the long history Amy, George, Dusty and I have together musically. For once, the vocals are right up front, but the guitars aren't, unfortunately.

Book Of Kills
06/23/2009
Jim Shelley

Story

This morning, I was browsing through my "various songs" folder on the crappy old PC that (inexplicably) I have hundreds of songs stored on and found this track. From the summer of 2009. From what I hear on the track, it's me on lead vocal and lead guitar, George Nipe III on bass and backing vocal, Mike Hicks on drums, and David Tekippe on rhythm guitar and possibly backing vocal. It was pretty rare for me to ever get through the solo that I wrote for this song (I almost never improvised on it) without flubbing it, but somehow I make it through the whole thing, so this is a rare track, indeed. I don't know if I've ever posted it before or not. I think probably not.

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Book of Kills
2/1/2003
Jim Shelley

Story

This version of Book Of Kills (Bill Bird - bass/vocals; Randy Simpson - guitar/vocals; Jane Firkin (guitar/vocals); Casey Firkin - drums/vocals; Jim Shelley - guitar/vocals) played "Stanley The Steamer" in a much more improvisational manner than the later incarnations of BOK. As I note before starting the song, we never really knew where exactly it was going to go and sometimes we went so far out that we almost couldn't find our way back. This is from a February 1, 2003, live performance at the now-defunct Alston's in Harrisonburg, Virginia.

Jim Shelley
12/18/2010
Jim Shelley/Amy Bugg

Story

This is one of several demos I made of the Fear + Whiskey song "Bona Fide". There's no date attached to this one but I think I wrote it (with Amy Bugg's help on lyrics) the weekend before Christmas of 2010. We began incorporating it into our set list in early 2011 and played it live for the first time, March 2011. I remember wanting to create a Flaming Lips sort of thing. The Lips were just super special to me from 1999 through the formation of Fear + Whiskey and I know I originally wanted my band to be a psychedelic/folk/rock hybrid in the same vein as them. Previously unreleased (I think...who knows anymore?).

Book of Kills
05/04/2002
Jane Firkin

Story

I think this recording is from a May 4, 2002 BOK show at the Little Grill in Harrisonburg, VA. Jane Firkin - guitar/vocal; Casey Firkin - drums; Bill Bird - bass; Randy Simpson - guitar; Jim Shelley - guitar.

The Karl Rove
08/21/2006
Johnny St. Ours

Story

One of the Karl Rove's best live songs. This is from the CD-R MONKEY CLAUS PLUS. Johnny St. Ours - Vocal/rhythm guitar; Aaron Farrington - bass; Billy Hunt - drums; Jim Shelley - lead guitar. Recorded (probably) some time in the summer of 2006. I know I've got the information for this somewhere but I'm too lazy to look for it right now.

Book of Kills
07/08/2015
Kurt Cobain

Story

One of the final songs performed by Book of Kills at the "Farewell Show", March 13, 2010, at the Little Grill in Harrisonburg, VA. Mike Hicks - drums; George Nipe III - bass/lead vocal; Jim Shelley - guitar/backing vocal. Newly remastered.

Book of Kills
10/08/2009
Jim Shelley/Aaron Farrington

Story

Live performance of "Little Metal Toys" from the October 8, 2009 show at Harrisonburg, VA's Little Grill. David Tekippe - guitar; George Nipe III - bass/vocal; Mike Hicks - drums; Jim Shelley - lead guitar/vocal.

Jim Shelley
10/08/2009
Jim Shelley/Johnny St. Ours/Aaron Farrington

Story

From the 2009 Book Of Kills album. Originally a Karl Rove favorite, though that band never got a chance to completely work our a suitable arrangement before it disbanded. (There's been some [rather unlikely] speculation that The Karl Rove could reunite for a show or two in 2016 if the conditions are right.) Mike Hicks on drums; George Nipe III on bass and vocals; Jim Shelley on guitars and vocals.

Book of Kills
3/11/2009
Jim Shelley

Story

Good live performances of "Blue Man", originally found on 1992's THE HAUNTED LIFE. Featuring Mike Hicks on drums; David Tekippe on guitar; George Nipe III on bass and lead vocal; and Jim Shelley on lead guitar and backing vocal. From a March 3, 2009, show at the now defunct Blue Nile in Harrisonburg, Virginia.

Fear + Whiskey
06/02/2015
Jim Shelley

Story

I'm posting this cut again due to a couple of requests for a live version of "Heaven". This one, by Fear + Whiskey, has a nice clear vocal and the performance (from a practice at Bugg's Place in McGaheysville, VA) is pretty solid. Amy Bugg on bass/vocals; Jim Shelley on lead guitar/vocals; Zack Simpson on drums; and George Nipe III on rhythm guitar. I forget now exactly when this performance took place but I am guessing some time in the spring or summer of 2012.

Fear + Whiskey
07/20/2015
Jim Shelley/Amy Bugg

Story

Previously unreleased live practice version of the Fear + Whiskey song, "The Pleasures of Saying Goodbye". Zack Simpson playing killer drums (this is a hard song to keep a steady beat going for 3 1/2 minutes!), Amy Bugg playing bass and singing lead, and Jim Shelley playing guitar and singing back up vocal. I'm not sure when this is from, but I'm guessing late 2012 or early 2013.

Fear + Whiskey
03/01/2013
Ron & Scott Asheton, Dave Alexander, Iggy Pop

Story

The classic Stooges song. From Fear + Whiskey's "last" show. We (Fear + Whiskey) did it sort of as a goof but nonetheless a fun way to start a show (which one of the owners of the Grill told me later that night was one of the best shows he'd ever seen at the Grill.) It's pretty ragged, but what the hell...we practiced it a couple times before the gig. Amy Bugg - bass/vocal; George Nipe III - guitar/vocal; Zack Simpson - drums; Jim Shelley - lead guitar/vocal.

Book of Kills
07/12/2003
Jane Firkin

Story

Recorded live at CecilFest, July 12, 2003.  A good live rendition of an excellent song written by Jane Firkin.  Easily one of her more popular compositions live.  We originally recorded a rather clunky version of it for E.P., then re-did it for HOGGETT HEAD.

Again...Jane on lead vocal and guitar; me on lead guitar and backing vocal; Bill Bird on bass; Casey Firkin on drums, Randy Simpson on guitar. One more example of the uniqueness of that version of BOK was. No one had ever sounded like that band and no one really ever has since. Everything I hear today sounds like a rehash of a million things that have come before it. Not that group. It was just a unique combination of a fiver of very unusual talents.

I always really enjoyed playing other people’s songs when I was in a band because I could concentrate on my guitar and not have to worry about singing so much.

Book of Kills
06/18/1996
Jim Shelley

Story

Originally released on the 1996 album, WRITING ON THE WALL, VOLUME 3, "Abandoned" is a live cut from a BOK show from October of 1994. Dusty Bugg on drums/vocal; George Finch on guitar; Brian Temples on bass/vocal; Jim Shelley - guitar/lead vocal.

Book of Kills
10/10/2000
The Ramones

Story

Recorded October 2000.  Another cover that we performed live a few times, although this cut is from a practice I recorded on a boombox.  Everybody loves Ramones songs and they’re easy to learn so we tossed this one into the set during Lisa Van Fossen’s tenure on bass.  I miss playing music with her.  She was an insanely talented woman. Also featuring Casey Firkin - drums/vocal; Jane Firkin - guitar/vocal; Jim Shelley - guitar/vocal.

Book of Kills
01/04/2014
Jim Shelley

Story

This is the opening song from the last show the very last incarnation of Book of Kills played, way back in January of 2014. At the time, we all seemed pretty stoked about coming back together on occasion and playing three or four shows a year, but those plans seem to have fallen through. Pretty ragged performance, but exciting too. Jane Firkin - vocal/guitar; Casey Firkin - vocal/guitar; George Nipe III - vocal/bass; Pablo Olivieri - drums; Jim Shelley - vocal/guitar.

Book of Kills
04/13/2004
Even Dando & Tom Morgan and Jim Shelley

Story

From the 2004 live album, ROCKIN' THE CHEETAH'S ASS, this is a medley of the Lemonheads' "Style" and the old BOK chestnut "Bad Person". Nice rockin' version. Unusual, too, in that I play some slide guitar on it which is something I rarely did. Bass/Vocal - Bill Bird; Guitar/Vocal - Jim Shelley; Guitar/Vocal - Jane Firkin; Drums/Vocal - Casey Firkin; Guitar/Vocal - Randy Simpson. From the Sound Quilt Festival performance, August 23, 2003.

Book of Kills
12/09/2000
Jim Shelley

Story

A slightly different recording from the DVD version of the December 9, 2000 Book of Kills show at The Little Grill. This is just a bit cleaner and more open sounding, at least to my ears, though it's not THAT great of an improvement. Interesting mainly for the arrangement that varied quite a lot from the later ones from 2004 on. Worth getting if you don't already own the rare DVD of the show. Lisa Van Fossen on bass, Jane Firkin on guitar, Casey Firkin on drums, and Jim Shelley on vocal and guitar.

The Karl Rove
04/20/2006
Johnny St. Ours

Story

Johnny St. Ours' "God Bless" is one of the greatest rock and roll songs of the Twenty-First Century. This particular version comes from an early Karl Rove gig in Charlottesville, Virginia, at the now defunct Atomic Burrito. It just about blows my mind that that show was almost ten years ago. Jeezy Weezy! Johnny St. Ours - guitar/lead vocal; Aaron Farrington - bass; Jim Shelley - guitar/backing vocal; Billy Hunt - drums. Newly remastered from the original boom box recording, even if you have the concert from when I originally posted it, you might want to get this one too since it's a little cleaner.

Book Of Kills
3/28/2001
Jane Firkin

Story

Previously unreleased live take of Jane Firkin's "Cave In" from a March 28, 2001 practice. Sounds like several folks were in attendance, which was actually a very common affair back then. People just seemed to like being around the band and just about everyone who hung out regularly or semi-regularly was invariably there at every live gig as well. Fun times. A pretty laid-back rendition. Jane Firkin on guitar and vocal, Jim Shelley on lead guitar and backing vocal, Bill Bird on bass, Casey Firkin on drums.

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Book Of Kills
3/14/2009
Jim Shelley/Aaron Farrington

Story

One of my favorite BOK shows ever was, oddly enough, at a little restaurant on top of a mountain just west of Luray, Virginia back in 2009. I was still recovering from a really bad case of the flu that had morphed into pneumonia and the whole show I was halfway to La La Land. As I've noted often, that band had a tiny little contingent of fans who seemed to follow us everywhere we played and a nice gathering of folks who'd been BOK-heads since 2000 also showed up and of course there were appreciative Sleepfeeder fans as well. It just turned out to be an ideal gathering and we played pretty well and with a lot of fire that evening. This is the encore. Newly remastered. Mike Hicks - drums, George Nipe III - bass/vocal, David Tekippe - guitar, Jim Shelley - vocal/lead guitar.

Book Of Kills
03/14/2009
Jim Shelley/Dave Buracker/Brian Buracker

Story

Good live version of the song originally written and performed by the 1997 version of BOK. This one was performed by George Nipe III - bass/vocal; Jim Shelley - guitar/vocal; Mike Hicks - drums; David Tekippe - guitar. As I've noted elsewhere on this page, I was recovering from pneumonia when we played this show but somehow I felt really dialed in, as did the rest of the band. My voice left something to be desired, though.  I guess it always does.

Fear + Whiskey
03/01/2012
Jim Shelley

Story

"I Fell Inside" originally showed up on 1996's SPLENDID TRIGGER. This version is from the first live performance by the Fear + Whiskey line-up of Amy Bugg (bass/vocals), Jim Shelley (guitar/vocals), and Zack Simpson (drums). Of course, we decided to make our live debut on radio and after Zack had only been playing with us for a couple months. But Fortunately, Zack is a really imaginative, very capable drummer.

As I've often said, I'm not a lead guitarist. But the weird thing is, is that I have lead guitar lines in my head for just about every rock song I play and feel as though I'm the one who has to play lead in order for those lines to exist the way they "should" on the recorded version. The funny thing about that is that I never really play a solo the same way twice. (And it bears noting that for this song Amy and Zack didn't really know how long I was going to play before heading back into the vocal sections.) Anyway, all things considered, this isn't a bad live version at all. The fact that I made it through the song's lengthy solos without a meltdown is a minor miracle.

Fear + Whiskey
11/13/2010
Jim Shelley

Story

As of this upload, this song was performed just about to the day (give or take three days) five years ago. This is a relatively early incarnation of Fear + Whiskey with Jeff Lown on drums and Amy Bugg on bass. Recorded at Bugg's Place on November 13, 2010. Since the early 2000s, I'd more or less stopped singing this song in favor of George Nipe III. However, since George wasn't in this band (at least at the time), I started singing it again. Always one of the more requested songs I have ever written, this is the third version posted on the Audio page, but it seems there are always a few Book of Kills listeners who like to have copies of the song they don't already possess. There's a little bit of overload on the vocals that came from the sound system, but it's not bad. Newly remastered.

Fear + Whiskey
08/02/2011
Bob Dylan

Story

Relatively rare version of a Fear + Whiskey favorite by Bob Dylan. Good vocal by Amy and a good performance by the band considering we're all rank amateurs just out to have fun. Recorded live in practice. Jeff Lown on drums. Amy Bugg on bass and vocal. Jim Shelley on guitar.

Book of Kills
3/03/2009
Jim Shelley/George Nipe III/Mike Hicks/Garfield Banks

Story

Really good version of "Glass Turns to Sand" featuring Mike Hicks (drums), George Nipe III (bass/vocals), David Tekippe (guitar), and Jim Shelley (guitar/vocal). From a practice session on March 3, 2009 as we got ready for a show a week later.

Book Of Kills
11/06/2009
Ted Egan

Story

The old Vaselines song made famous by Nirvana, of course. From a performance at Harrisonburg, Virginia's Little Grill, November 6, 2009. George Nipe III on bass and vocals, Mike Hicks on drums, David Tekippe on guitar, and Jim Shelley on guitar and vocals. I remember at least one member of the audience joined us onstage for an impromptu singalong. Great fun!

Book Of Kills
10/21/2002
Spector, Greenwich & Barry

Story

The famous Crystals track from the early '60s. I'm not sure, but I believe this is from a practice a week or two before we played this song in front of an audience for the first time in late 2002. Most likely recorded (on the old black boom box my dear mom gave me for Christmas some time in the late '90s) either October 21 or 28 of that year. Featuring Randy Simpson, guitar; Jane Firkin, guitar/vocal; Bill Bird, bass; Casey Firkin, drums; Jim Shelley, vocal/guitar.

Book Of Kills
3/5/2009
Jim Shelley

Story

I'm sure this has been released in some format, either on CD or via download on this website, but it's a good version of the BOK classic from 2009. Originally released in 2007 on an album that I now think is one of the best things I ever did, DIFFERENT, I think the 2008-2009 era BOK consisting of George Nipe III, Mike Hicks, and me (with David Tekippe's excellent guitar work on and off as well) made the song even better. This is from an early March practice in 2009 when the band was really hitting its stride. Remastered January 1, 2016.

Book of Proles
07/29/2015
Jim Shelley

Story

Requests for more Karl Rove? Okay. I can do that. I realize that that era is woefully misrepresented on the audio page. Here's a pre-Karl Rove track from a practice back when Johnny St. Ours, Aaron Farrington, me and Casey Firkin(!) were jamming together as Book of Proles. We actually played a show or two with that line-up before Casey went back to drumming full time for Walnut Grove. We, of course, added Billy Hunt to our own line-up and became The Karl Rove. Or is that simply "Karl Rove"? Is it "The Rolling Stones"? Or is it just "Rolling Stones"? "The Beatles"? Or just "Beatles"? What an existential quandary such questions present.

Anyhow...I'll gradually upload some more Karl Rove material. I've put up two new songs today. That's enough.

Book of Kills
11/18/2004
Jim Shelley

Story

Another superb performance by the 2004-era Book of Kills featuring Mike Chiarello on lead guitar/vocals, Brian Temples on bass/vocals, Dustin Bugg on drums/vocals, and me on guitar/vocals. I originally wrote this medley in 1994 for the early Brian/Dustin/George Finch/me version of the band. 1994-95 was one of my more creative periods and I wrote quite a bit of the songs that many people, for better or worse, still associate with BOK twenty-some years later.

The Karl Rove
04/20/2006
Jim Shelley

Story

Recorded on the semi-legendary little black cassette boombox, this is from a Karl Rove show at the Atomic Burrito in Charlottesville, Virginia. Fun show. In fact, the 4/20/2006 performance epitomized, to me at least, everything that was great about that relatively short-lived group, comprised of Johnny St. Ours on guitar/vocal, Billy Hunt on drums, Aaron Farrington on bass/vocal and me on guitar/vocal. We were a band for and of the times. I just wish we could've played once at the White House. I know W and his vice president would've loved us. We could've changed the conscience of a nation. Who knows how much misery we could've saved the world and perhaps most of the known universe?

The Karl Rove
Jim Shelley/Aaron Farrington/Johnny St. Ours

Story

Recorded (I think) June 25, 2006, in Schuyler, Virginia at a house Tom Peloso (again, I think) was living in at the time. He was out touring with Modest Mouse and had told our bassist, Aaron Farrington, that we could record there while he was away. I recall setting everything up in a very big second story room that had pretty warm acoustics. I'd just bought a new iMac and a "lite" version of Cubase which I'd only familiarized myself with the night before, so I was flying by the seat of my pants trying to record some demos for the band (The Karl Rove). Billy Hunt, our drummer, had just practiced with us twice previously and really had only a cursory knowledge of most of the songs. We always did seem to hurtle headlong into everything though. I don't think I ever really totally learned any of Johnny St. Ours' (our lead guitarist) songs as well as I would've liked, nor most of the ones I did of my own for that matter.

Anyway, this is from the first day of a two day session. There were some guys from another band there but I don't remember exactly who...I think Critter Fuqua and Ketch Secor from Old Crow Medicine Show were there. We had a lot of fun...I do remember that. This is an edit that I've never released before. Enjoy.

The Plague Dogs
05/13/2007
Jim Shelley/Aaron Farrington

Story

Previously unreleased early mix (not really very different from the final track) of "Little Metal Toys". I'd come from The Karl Rove, which had imploded in mid to late 2006 and George Nipe III asked if I'd be interested in playing bass and occasional guitar in his band, The Plague Dogs. I thought it would be fun to play bass in a band and not be the number one face of the group, so I said I would. This version reminds me of mid-career Husker Du with the treble-y distorted guitars, the lightning fast pace of the song, and the cardboard-y sound of the snare. Very very sloppy but fun. This is where the song, certainly one of Book of Kills' most popular, came into its own after being birthed by The Karl Rove. Mike Hicks on guitar, George Nipe III on bass, me on guitar, and Garfield Banks on drums.

Book of Kills
04/16/2009
Dr. Bob's Nightmare

Story

Rare live rendition of "She's the One" a song originally performed by Philadelphia's Dr. Bob's Nightmare back in the early '90s. I recorded a version of it for the December 1999 Ain't Records Special Listener's Club CD. This live practice rendition features Mike Hicks on drums and George Nipe on bass and backing vocal. From early 2009, I think.

Book Of Kills
06/06/2009
Jim Shelley

Story

BOK's performance at the Rainbow Festival in Luray, Virginia, back in June 2009, was one of the more memorable gigs I ever was a part of, though to this day I maintain that it was one of the worst individual performances I ever gave. But something was in the air that night. Guess you had to be there. Drums - Mike Hicks. Bass/Vocals - George Nipe III. Guitar/Vocals - me.

Book of Kills
02/05/2009
Jim Shelley

Story

This song debuted on the 2007 BOK album DIFFERENT. From a live performance, February 5, 2009, at the Blue Nile, Harrisonburg, VA. Surprisingly, I could find almost no usable recordings of this song. Not very good sound but a fierce version. Mike Hicks - drums; David Tekippe - rhythm guitar/vocal; George Nipe III - bass/vocal; Jim Shelley - lead guitar/vocal.

Jim Shelley
11/01/1998
Jim Shelley

Story

I suppose I could go wandering through all the boxes I have containing old Book of Kills memorabilia and eventually I might find some clue as to when I released the cassette (or CD) this little album originally showed up on, but I'm just not in the mood today. I do remember that many years ago I sponsored some sort of special contest (back in the late '90s, I'm almost certain...most likely late 1998) on bookofkills.com where one lucky listener could win a special limited edition (of ONE!) e.p. called I KNOW WHAT LOVE IS with five tracks that had up to that time been previously unreleased. Zack Simpson (who later drummed for Fear + Whiskey!) won the CD. I don't even know what the titles of the three "experimental" piano pieces were that I included on the disc, this being the first one of the three.

Quite an anomaly in the long history of Book of Kills music. Enjoy.

Book of Kills
06/29/2016
Jim Shelley

Story

This track (the opening song from the 10/23/2004 show at the Little Grill) has never been formally released, though an earlier mastering of it appeared online as a free download back in the late 2000s. Dusty Bugg - drums/vocal; Mike Chiarello - guitar/vocal; Jim Shelley - guitar/vocal; Brian Temples - bass/vocal. This version of Book of Kills, which featured three of the four original members, would last only another month. Remastered from a VHS tape of the concert.

Book of Kills
06/09/2009
Jim Shelley/Dave Buracker/Brian Buracker

Story

Bang bang band performance of "Placebo", "Marzipan Day", and "So Tired". Unusual in that we practiced early that day for a show later in the evening as the headliners at The Rainbow Hill Festival in Luray, Virginia. This was during a time when second guitarist David Tekippe had taken some time off for a vacation (I think) and we were reduced to a trio. Trying to reproduce all the guitar parts of these three songs on one guitar is no mean feat, especially when you're me, but we all give it a spirited try before loading everything up and heading for the gig that night. Sloppy but fun and maybe a unique uninterrupted performance of those three songs. Mike Hicks on drums, George Nipe III on backing vocal and bass, and me on the rest.

Like listening to these rare live cuts? Sure you do! Please make sure to stream BOK on Spotify or Apple Music or whatever other company you get your music from. Thanks! And don't forget to turn your coolest friends onto Book of Kills! Thanks again!

Book of Kills
07/21/2003
Spinal Tap

Story

Live practice performance from 2003. This version of BOK was nearing its final days. Casey Firkin - drums/vocal; Jane Firkin - guitar/vocal; Bill Bird - bass/lead vocal; Jim Shelley - guitar/vocal. Randy Simpson (also in the band at this time) was not present at this performance.

Book of Kills
10/23/2004
Jim Shelley

Story

From the sole live performance in front of an audience by the line-up of Dusty Bugg, Brian Temples, Mike Chiarello, and me. At (where else?) the Little Grill in Harrisonburg, Virginia. We would play one last show on the radio about a month later. I rather unceremoniously (and regrettably) broke up the band using the Frank Black email method and was soon practicing with Johnny St. Ours, Aaron Farrington and Casey Firkin in what would become (with Billy Hunt replacing Casey on drums) The Karl Rove. This version, while still extremely lo-fi, has been remastered and is superior to all previous releases of this show.

Fear + Whiskey
11/09/2016
Jim Shelley/Amy Bugg

Story

Live version of "Bona Fide". From the August 2011 Blow Up the Moon festival. Amy Bugg - bass/vocal; Jim Shelley - backing vocal/guitar; Jeff Lown - drums.

Book of Kills
05/09/2001
Jim Shelley/Lou Reed/Casey Firkin

Story

When I listen to recordings of my old live shows, I more often than not tend to do a lot of wincing because, let's face it, a lot of times the performances highlight the fact that many of the line-ups I've been in over the years have been simply collections of inspired, earnest amateurs who're doing their damnedest to play their asses off but who (me perhaps most of all) just don't quite have it together enough to tilt the performance towards the professional side of the dial. That's not to say I haven't been in some bands that were freaking exciting to watch...that would be selling a lot of creative, smart, and cool people way too short.

But still...well, you get the picture. And the fault probably lies mostly with me...as a live performer I'm a pretty good...uh...a pretty good songwriter and recordist. But live performer? I don't know. While I've put thousands of hours into writing and recording original music, I've never been one to put much effort into being a good player. Probably largely because I know I'm just not a very talented musician when it comes to instrumental chops. I do put my spirit into my performances and I try my very hardest...

But whatever...

This is yet another rather ragged 2001 live performance (in the practice room) the night before our band played The Electric Blue in Waynesboro, Virginia. I remember that show was pretty good (at least most everyone clapped and yelled a lot), though we were lucky if there were fifty people there. The line-up: Casey Firkin - drums/vocals; Jane Firkin - guitar/vocals; Bill Bird - bass/vocals; and Jim Shelley - guitar/vocals. I think future lead BOK guitarist Randy Simpson was there that night.

BOK
01/13/2017
Jim Shelley/George Nipe III/Mike Hicks

Story

From our January 12, 2017 practice at George's place in Harrisonburg, Virginia. Keep in mind that this is our fourth practice. Also keep in mind that neither Garfield nor I have really played in three years. It's taking a while to get the chops back, although Garfield has gotten back much faster than I have. Too, I don't think George has played much at all in the past three years, though I might be wrong about that. Simply put, we're all working on getting up to speed. So it's sloppy (isn't it always sloppy?) but still pretty okay anyway. These snippets from early practices will not remain on the audio page for long. Download them quickly after they appear if you want to keep them!

I hope you like these free audio tracks! Keep streaming Jim Shelley & Book of Kills on Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer, YouTube, etc. And don't forget to tell others about us! There are at least twenty-five albums available for streaming and download now! Also, keep in mind that your favorite artists receive very little from a stream (fractions of a cent) on a free service. If you're part of a premium service those same artist receive a bigger fraction of a cent. I'm on Apple Music. I love it. I listen to music I haven't heard in years now.

Thanks!

BOK
01/13/2017
Mick Jagger/Keith Richards

Story

From our January 12, 2017 practice at George's place in Harrisonburg, Virginia. Keep in mind that this is our fourth practice. Also keep in mind that neither Garfield nor I have really played in three years. It's taking a while to get the chops back, although Garfield has gotten back much faster than I have. Too, I don't think George has played much at all in the past three years, though I might be wrong about that. Simply put, we're all working on getting up to speed. So it's sloppy (isn't it always sloppy?) but still pretty okay anyway. These snippets from early practices will not remain on the audio page for long. Download them quickly after they appear if you want to keep them!

I hope you like these free audio tracks! Keep streaming Jim Shelley & Book of Kills on Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer, YouTube, etc. And don't forget to tell others about us! There are at least twenty-five albums available for streaming and download now! Also, keep in mind that your favorite artists receive very little from a stream (fractions of a cent) on a free service. If you're part of a premium service those same artist receive a bigger fraction of a cent. I'm on Apple Music. I love it. I listen to music I haven't heard in years now.

Thanks!

Book of Kills
07/06/2009
Jim Shelley

Story

Rather ragged but spirited take on "Don't Stop the Scream" from an early practice of the George Nipe III (bass/vocals) Mike Hicks (drums) version of BOK. This practice took place not long after Plague Dogs had disbanded just a month or so before this performance.

Book of Kills
02/07/2017
Jim Shelley/Aaron Farrington

Story

Keeping the "insatiable" appetite for new live stuff from the practice room sated. We're working on "This World is Gonna Let You Down", "Idiot Planet" and more. Soon I'll put up some of that stuff. This is from this past Tuesday. Needless to say, sloppy but spirited. It has been seven or more years since I played most of these songs. It's good to be jamming them again.

Jim Shelley & Book of Kills
02/10/2017
Jim Shelley

Story

This is an outtake from the October 2015 Single of the Month #3 sessions. Originally I was going to take the three bass/drums outtakes from the 2009 TOWARDS THE ESCAPE sessions that formed the basis for single #3 and really lslather on the overdubs but decided to instead make the three songs I ended up releasing as "live" as possible by simply playing guitar and singing along with the bass and drums tracks that George Nipe III and Mike Hicks had originally laid down. This track is about 7/10th's done and is a product of the original multiple overdub plan. I intended to add some more vocals and a keyboard and third guitar part but never got around to it.

Over the years I've released literally hundreds of free live and studio tracks on bookofkills.com. If you have enjoyed listening to this music, I hope you'll remember to turn other folks onto the music of Jim Shelley & Book of Kills! There are hundreds of BOK, Fear + Whiskey, and various other Jim Shelley-related tracks on Apple Music, Spotify, Tidal, Slacker and blah blah! Stream those great tunes like your life depended on it! You'll have fun listening and you might even feel good about yourself as well for supporting the creation of homemade music. Thanks!

Book of Kills
11/26/2008
Jim Shelley/Aaron Farrington

Story

Rare performance of "River of Blood" from an early gig by the Mike Hicks (drums), George Nipe III (bass/vocal), Jim Shelley (guitar/vocal) version of Book of Kills at the now-defunct The Box in Charlottesville, Virginia. This was right before David Tekippe joined the band on second guitar. Breakneck performance but pretty decent. Sound is not the greatest. I remember there was nowhere to put the recorder, so I sat it up above the band on a shelf or door ledge or something. I think you can actually see it in photos of the performance. You can hear very enthusiastic former Karl Rove band mate Johnny St. Ours quite clearly throughout the recording. Of course, I wrote "River of Blood" with Aaron Farrington during my time in the 'Rove.

Fear + Whiskey
06/23/2011
Bob Dylan

Story

Good version of the Fear + Whiskey favorite, Bob Dylan's "Man in a Long Black Coat". From June 23, 2011. One of the last shows with Jeff Lown on drums. Featuring Amy Bugg on bass and lead vocal. Me on guitar and backing vocal. I think Yarn played an acoustic show that night.

Book of Kills
05/07/2009
Kurt Cobain

Story

From a fun show a the Little Grill in Harrisonburg, Virginia. Mike Hicks on drums; George Nipe III on lead vocal and bass; Jim Shelley on guitar and backing vocal; David Tekippe on lead guitar.

Book of Kills
11/18/2004
Jim Shelley

Story

Brian Temples - bass; Dustin Bugg - drums; Mike Chiarello - guitar; Jim Shelley - guitar/vocal. Live at the Little Grill in 2004. This band should've been nationally known. Instead, we could barely attract 40 people to the Little Grill in Harrisonburg, VA to see our only live show EVER. What great musicians. I felt so humble to even be in their presence. Recorded on a tiny cassette boombox; thus the terrible sound.

BOK
04/4/2017
Jim Shelley

Story

This should be quite an interesting track to long-time BOK followers. You've never heard this one done live, nor have you heard it done like this. "I Leave Her There Till She Rings 3 Times" was something I originally wrote in the spring of 1996 for what was going to be a new album. I was, however, in the process of moving from my home in Dayton, Virginia to Bridgewater, Virginia (about a three mile trek), and I simply couldn't find the creative energy to finish the record. Which is too bad because the songs I did finish turned out to be pretty adventurous, I think. Anyway, they showed up as sort of a double sided e.p. in June 1996, as WRITING ON THE WALL. I think I wrote and recorded something like 40 songs that year. SPLENDID TRIGGER, of course, dropped just two months later. Good Lord, how did I write and record so many songs in so little time?

If I remember correctly, when I came up with "I Leave Her There" I was heavily into Spacemen 3. I guess it shows? The lyrics were throw-away lines of nonsense, but I like throwaway nonsense. As a matter of fact, the whole song was more or less something I just came up with on the fly to fill out an e.p.'s worth of material.

Anyhow, this track features Garfield Banks on drums, George Nipe III on bass and backing vocals and yours truly on guitar and lead vocals. The astounding thing about this performance is that it's the first time we'd played the whole thing straight through! This song, I believe, is the key to finding ourselves as a band.

Book of Kills
10/23/2004
Jim Shelley

Story

From this line-up's only performance in front of an audience. Mike Chiarello on lead guitar; Dustin Bugg on drums; Brian Temples on bass; Jim Shelley on guitar and vocal. At the Little Grill, Harrisonburg, Virginia. There were two different recordings of this concert. I'm not sure which one is which. Both were rather challenged sonically. (Is "sonically" a word?)

BOK
07/27/2013
Jim Shelley

Story

Don't know if I've ever made this track available before. Every take of "Blue Man" has something new to offer a BOK fan because no two are ever the same. From a practice session July 27, 2013. Casey Firkin - guitar; Jane Firkin - guitar; Jim Shelley - guitar/backing vocal; George Nipe III - bass/lead vocal; Pablo Olivieri - drums. I really enjoyed playing with this line-up. I think we had fun.

Fear + Whiskey
05/04/2010
Jim Shelley/Amy Bugg

Story

The sound of three profoundly amateur amateurs attempting a song most likely far beyond their technical abilities. "Few and Far" was one of the first songs, and certainly the most difficult one, Amy and I wrote together during our tenure in Fear + Whiskey. Amy Bugg - bass/lead vocal; Jeff Lown - drums; Jim Shelley - guitar/backing vocal.

Book of Kills
05/31/2017
Jim Shelley

Story

Spirited version of the old BOK standby "Lost" from a practice session, May 31, 2017. There wasn't a live version of "Lost" on the audio page so what the hell...this one's got some fire. George Nipe III - bass/backing vocal; Garfield Banks - drums; Jim Shelley - guitar/lead vocal.

Book of Kills
10/10/2009
Jim Shelley/George Nipe III/Mike Hicks/David Tekippe

Story

"The Nothing" was only performed live three times, including this version from a show at now defunct Blue Nile in Harrisonburg, Virginia way back in 2009. I can't say that it was a composition I was all that wild about, but I certainly didn't have to grit my teeth to play it. I remember once Mike Hicks telling me he just felt like this wasn't really a BOK song. I will say that "The Nothing" was fairly complex, at least compared to most of the stuff I've ever had a part in writing. Written by all four of us in the band at the time...George Nipe III (bass/vocal); Jim Shelley (guitar/vocal); Mike Hicks (drums); David Tekippe (lead guitar).

Book of Kills
05/08/2009
Jim Shelley

Story

There are at least three different recordings of the May 8, 2009 show at the Outback Lodge in Charlottesville, Virginia, though I'm not sure why since this gig was not one of our stronger performances. Strangely, I don't think any of the three has the show in its entirety. Regardless, this is "Blue Man" which comes off pretty well. As I've said before, no two versions of "Blue Man" are ever the same so they're always worth collecting if you like having live BOK material. The instruments come through pretty well (though David Tekippe's guitar is very distant), but the vocals are unfortunately buried. Anyhow, a decent version.

Book of Kills
07/26/2013
Jane Firkin/Jim Shelley

Story

The only song Jane Firkin and I ever wrote together for some reason, though we did collaborate (along with Casey Firkin, Bill Bird and Randy Simpson) on a number of other songs ithrough working out arrangements back in the early 2000s. This is one of the more interesting BOK line-ups, the 2013 version consisted of Casey Firkin, Jane Firkin, and Jim Shelley on vocals and guitars; George Nipe on bass and vocals, and Pablo Olivieri on drums. We were preparing for a show we thought we were going to be playing at Bugg's Barn in mid-August, but one thing led to another and very unfortunately we ended up not playing. That would've been our debut. Oh well. This is from a practice at George's house in late July of 2013. The vocals are unfortunately quite low (as you know, a frequent problem with BOK) but the track is generally well-played. I hope you enjoy it.

Book of Kills
08/02/2017
Jim Shelley/Aaron Farrington

Story

From August 2, 2017 at George Nipe III's house. Garfield Banks - drums; George Nipe III - bass/vocal; Jim Shelley - guitar/vocal.

Book of Kills
08/02/2017
George Nipe III

Story

Plague Dogs song that George III wrote long ago. From August 2, 2017 at George Nipe III's house. Garfield Banks - drums; George Nipe III - bass/vocal; Jim Shelley - guitar/vocal.

Book of Kills
08/02/2017
Jim Shelley

Story

Every one of them is different. From August 2, 2017 at George Nipe III's house. Garfield Banks - drums; George Nipe III - bass/vocal; Jim Shelley - guitar/vocal.

Book of Kills
08/02/2017
Jim Shelley

Story

From August 2, 2017 at George Nipe III's house. Garfield Banks - drums; George Nipe III - bass/vocal; Jim Shelley - guitar/vocal. By the way, there's some sort of digital artifact...a skip (maybe half a second) near the end of the song that must have occurred when I was mastering the song to upload but it's not terrible and I was too lazy to go back to the original and see if I could somehow fix it.