For Greater Consciousness | Socially Conscious Piano Rock

Getting to Know FGC

For Greater Consciousness is the work of Pittsburgh-based singer-songwriter Benjamin Saalbach-Walsh, specializing in socially-conscious piano rock. With a strong lyrical focus simultaneously intellectual and emotional, his music also incorporates elements of humor, improvisation, and vegetarian cooking. His creative and original music draws on influences including pianist Ben Folds, chamber pop, and folk-punk.

The band's name is its mission statement. Says Benjamin:

I believe that social change can arise from a shift in consciousness which leads individuals to act differently, but intellectual change is not enough. The life changes I have made required a shift in my thinking, yes, but I did not make the changes until I had an experience which gave me an emotional connection. My aspiration is to craft songs which provide both intellectual stimulation and that emotional experience, and which will lead our audience to fundamentally improve their lives and thereby improve the state of the world as a whole.

A FGC show is not just a musical experience, but a chance to share a meal together. Benjamin is a talented vegetarian chef and likes to ensure that food is on hand. Many FGC shows are actually potlucks, with guests encouraged to bring vegetarian and vegan dishes of their own to share.

While primarily performing as a solo act at present, For Greater Consciousness also includes the talents and occasional songwriting of a number of other musicians, including:

  • brother/drummer/multi-instrumentalist Christopher Saalbach-Walsh
  • rock band/recording engineer/manager Will Haines
  • trumpeteer/accordionist Tom Pike
  • cellist/guitarist Bob Wallace

Alumni include drummer Leah McKelvey, bass clarinetist Kevin Sapp, and many, many others.