Photo from the band’s Facebook page
Jon Bindley, frontman of the Bindley Hardware Co., has incurred an outstanding reputation as a pioneer and poster child of the niche genre “Rust Belt Americana.” Built on a unique local history, the band writes nostalgically of the City of Bridges, which adds an air of community for fans that also hail from Pittsburgh. As friendly as ever, when he’s not performing you can usually find Jon at the Park House listening to the Shelf Life String Band, or in the audience at a Molly Alphabet show. Punksburgh caught up with him for today’s inquisition:
If you’ve ever wandered into the Park House on a Wednesday night, you were probably greeted by the bluegrass stylings of the resident Shelf Life String Band. This ‘runaway train in complete control’ plays a mix of traditionals and originals that take you on a unique musical journey. The non-traditional addition of a saxophone (played by Mark Jackovic) really throws a monkey wrench into the mix, which makes the band all the more unique.
Photograph taken by Thomas Koraido
The voice of lead vocalist and guitarist Derek Dysart is wholesome and welcoming. Be aware though – when they commit to a tempo of 160+ beats per minute, the space time continuum itself seems to slow from the furious fingerpicking of banjo player Joe Dep, the fast fiddling of violinist Rocky Youhon, and the serious strumming of mandolin player Andy Boehm. Bassist Riley Zimmerman gives the band its solid foundation.
Photograph from Shelf Life’s Facebook page
Whether you are a fan of bluegrass or not, the inviting presence of this band is bound to have you in the mood for some pickin’ and grinnin’ by the end of the night. We here in the ‘burgh are lucky to have them.