Toy Shop Ghost
Songs with a story--homesick astronauts, conversations with a shark, aliens posing as pilgrims--this is Art Plunk. Surrealist art songs dusted with Americana.
Toy Shop Ghost began in 2013 as a vehicle for songs written by Jim Connolly. In the following three years, Toy Shop Ghost recorded three albums of original tunes (Broadcasting Live, Art Plunk, Sparks Spread Wildfire ), and a fourth of songs from the 1920's and 30's reimagined with string quartet (Thrift Store).
Toy Shop Ghost has traveled to perform in Germany, Poland, Macedonia, Greece, and Mexico. Collaborators have included Anna Abbey, Peter Buck, Nate Birkey, Emily Hay, Austin Beede, Chris Symer, and Robinson Eikenberry. Current plans include a return to Germany and an album of duos recorded in restrooms and churches.
Jim Connolly writes music and lives in Santa Barbara, California. Past projects included The Gove County Philharmonic and The Gove County String Quartet. Current projects include collaboration with Lit Moon Theatre, for which he has worked as a composer and performer for 22 years, Toy Shop Ghost (songs with banjo, ruan, and other things) and a radio-style late night variety show called Live From The Piano Kitchen.
Jim plays the double bass, saw, ruan, banjo, piano, and sings. Growing up in Massachusetts he played in rock bands and orchestras. He attended New England Conservatory and began writing music the day he quit school.
Jim has received nine Independent Theater Awards, numerous commissions and grants, and been named one of the twenty-five most intriguing people in Santa Barbara Magazine. He's released eight recordings of original music. He has worked or collaborated with Nate Birkey, Gilles Apap, Van Dyke Parks, Jeff Kaiser, Brad Dutz, Headless Household, Jeff Bridges, Vinny Golia, Eugene Chadbourne, Glen Philips, Spencer Barnitz, Anna Abbey and his brother Kevin Connolly.