Rockstar Librarian: Meet the Dinner Set Gang

Daisy Lehman and Claire Guttormson

As it turns out, our very own Tosa West librarian, Derek De Vinney, is a modern day Hannah Montana. When his nose is not in a book, De Vinney can be found shredding the bass on his band’s brand new album, Are You Someplace Else? We sat down with De Vinney to discuss his band, The Dinner Set Gang, and what it’s like to get the best of both worlds. 


  1. What is the story behind your band name? 


My bandmate got the idea from a podcast episode about the real life dinner set gang, a small family-operation of jewel thieves. Please note, I don’t condone stealing! It’s just an interesting slice of history, one that I’m surprised hasn’t been made into a movie or miniseries yet. 


  1. What is your band’s origin story?


I started writing these songs as a solo project. My friend Josh agreed to record them at his new recording studio–Silver City Studios. It became a collaborative project at that point. We are the main two members, but there are many other local musicians whom we collaborate with.


  1. What is the best part of being in a band?


I love the creative process. I love being in the flow state while recording and mixing music. I always feel good after creating something!


  1. Which song are you proudest of?


Probably “Are You Someplace Else?”. It is the first song I wrote for this project and began with a sample of a friend’s song.


  1. What is your favorite band?


I really like Khruangbin. They merge genres in a really interesting way. Mainly I love the basslines.


  1. How do you write songs?


I usually start with a bass, synth, or guitar part and build a demo from that. I’ll write and record lyrics after a song is basically done–that is the hardest part!  Then we take the demo to the studio and record real drums/percussion and other analog instruments, as well as a lot of backup singing.


  1. How did you get interested in music?


In middle school I got really into punk bands like Green Day and Anti-Flag. I listened to their CDs over and over again to figure out the basslines. I’ve been playing in bands ever since.


  1. Do you consider yourself a rockstar?


No, but my mom does. She even got me an Christmas ornament that says “rockstar”.


  1. Do you believe that a lot of librarians are secretly rockstars? (do you have a secret society?)


All librarians are rockstars. That’s no secret.


Find De Vinny’s music and videos on Spotify and Youtube at:


Music videos:


Are You Someplace Else?:

Ceiling Fan:

Awful Things: