The wonderfully evocative First Shoots of Spring from his album Samhain's March: A Winter Journey appears in our 2013 Spring Equinox Show Part 2, SP36.
James started playing music about age 17 (a relatively late start), but it was not till he was 36 that he really began his musical career in earnest. It was then he met Warren Ferguson and was asked to play guitar for a single gig on Saint Patrick's day.
Soon it became apparent that James had a knack for singing Irish music, and, with James providing vocals and guitar, fiddlers Warren Ferguson, Tom Kagan and Stacy England, and Al Haines on Cello the the Friendly Fiddlers were formed.
It was with The Friendly Fiddlers playing Irish pubs, festivals, and parties that James began developing his highly rhythmic style of guitar accompaniment. Also, with the Fiddlers James received his first taste of recording in the studio, when they recorded their CD "The Juice of the Barley". James stayed with The Friendly Fiddlers for about a year and then he and Al Haines split off from the group to form a duo called The Gypsy Rovers. The focus was a clearly more folk Irish and Scottish repertoire.
Sometime during this period James met Bruce Stevenson and Allen Baker. Bruce had a rock and roll background and Allen was deeply entrenched in both Traditional Irish and Scottish music. With this mix of influences they formed the Irish Wolfhounds. The Irish Wolfhounds played traditional Celtic music, Rock and Roll and Americana with Celtic Instrumentation. All along James had been develop a driving danceable rhythm, but it was with the Irish Wolfhounds that this style really began to flourish. It was, also, with the Irish Wolfhounds that James met Greg Elkins of Desolation Row Recording, and participated in recording the Irish Wolfhounds demo CD.
While still with the Irish Wolfhounds, James began to record his own solo album. He started this project with Greg, who recorded and co-produced the album, Samhain's March: A Winter Journey. Samhain's March was seminal moment for James as it packaged in one album traditional music and original music spanning both Celtic and Americana styles. To produce the album he called on the skills of several musicians: Caitlin Cary, David Pitts, Eric Hahn, and Allen Baker.
After releasing Samhain's March he then began playing gig after gig, and further refined his dynamic foot-stomping, heart moving performances.
James has 3 albums available.
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