The Virtual Skafish Experience

The Official Website

In February 1976, a tremendously innovative and pioneering artist began shaking things up in the Chicago club scene.  Skafish (Jim Skafish) and his band hurled a never-before heard or seen sensibility at an unsuspecting public. Skafish's appearance alone--a huge hook  nose, meaty 6 foot 3 frame, and the suggestion of breasts that was underscored and emphasized by degradingly gender-bending clothing, stunned audiences.   The lyrics and music were equally overwhelming.  Autobiographical experiences of childhood abuse, rejection, alienation, and sacrilegious themes were rebelliously flaunted and acted out on stage.  A combination of atonal jazz improvisation, 20th century avant-garde, classic pop melody and high-speed frenetic rock, the music was overpowering and disorienting.  The reactions were immediate, extreme and violent--and the press took notice.  By the summer of 1977, Skafish and his music began to find an audience.  

Acknowledged as the sole originator and Godfather of Chicago's punk, new wave, alternative and indie rock movements, Skafish also co-created these art forms on a worldwide level. Skafish was a pioneer decades ahead of his time, irrevocably changing the face of Chicago music and culture, opening the door for all punk, new wave, alternative and indie rock artists to have their voices heard worldwide.

Site News

Are you here because you're a fan of Skafish's early, groundbreaking music from the 1970's? Then we've got news for you!

The first official live Skafish album, BOOTLEG 21-35, has now been released as a digital only recording. It was recorded at Ratso's in Chicago on Skafish's 21st birthday on August 29, 1977 and features 27 songs, 15 of which have never been released in any form before. And, you can pick up the album (which is over 2 hours and 13 minutes long, including 8 new Skafish-narrated commentary tracks) for the unbelievable price of just $6.99 on iTunes!

To learn more about the project, listen to the entire album for free, see videos, and read lyrics, visit the official Skafish Bootleg site.

Exclusive complete video commentary premiere, first on

Check out the complete video of Skafish narrating the 8 commentary tracks from the bootleg. In this long-form piece, Skafish discusses having emergency knee surgery weeks before his 21st birthday concert. He talks about receiving the bootleg tapes to the show over 30 years later, and the technical process of releasing the project. For those who are interested in the songs, Skafish shares the musical, lyrical, and conceptual reasons why he wrote each composition, and every band member's contribution. Watch his perspective on this historic milestone concert!

Want to hear the lastest from Skafish, in depth and uncensored? Read the Skafish Blog and see what he has to say.

Connect with Skafish on Facebook.
Keep in touch on Myspace: Skafish at Myspace and La Befana Records Myspace.
Also, follow his tweets at Twitter.

To see past site news, click here

From the Navigation Bar on the left, select from the following categories:

  • Timeline, Press, and Photos:  Represents in text, press reaction, and photographs, the year to year story from 1961-2000.
  • Band and People:  Offers bios of every Skafish band member, important guest artists and associates who were a part of the project.  

  • Quotes: Band members, other artists, music industry insiders and the photographers/videographers who documented Skafish reflect, in their own words, on the Skafish experience.  

  • Discography: Features a complete listing of released and unreleased Skafish recordings, and Skafish's personal liner notes about every released and unreleased track.***Updated***  

  •  Audio:  Features eight complete Skafish songs from 1979 to 1994. **New Audio added**

  • Video:  A complete listing of released and unreleased video and clips of the Skafish band performing in the early days of Chicago.  **Under Construction**

  •  Bookings: Contact info to book Skafish for live performances. 

  • Search: To find anyone on this website.  

  • FAQ: Answers questions that have been repeatedly asked, and allows anyone to email questions.  

  • Guestbook: To be placed on our mailing list. 

  • Links  Offers addresses of various people on this website and links to other related sites.

  • Info/Contact Us:  Offers important updates, contact information and requests for information from  Latest updates to the site are listed here!  Submit photos for the Skafish fanpage!

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The navigation bar is one of the features currently being updated so this will not work on all pages until updates are complete.

(Color photo at top by Rita Hayle)

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To contact the webmaster, click here.

This site designed and maintained by Glinda Harrison

Website © 2000-2012 Jim Skafish
Skafish is a registered trademark of James G. Skafish
All Rights reserved.  No Material may be reproduced without permission.