Upon relocating to New York City José studied at The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music Vocal Program under the guidance of Junior Mance, Chico Hamilton, and Janet Lawson, expanding his conception into the original compositions that became his highly-acclaimed 2008 debut album, "The Dreamer" - voted 21 Best Jazz Album of 2008 in JazzTimes Magazine Critics Poll.
Since his arrival on the international scene in 2008 vocalist José James has consistently dazzled critics and audiences alike with his unique combination of soul, hip-hop and jazz.
|12.03.10||20:00||München - Ampere|
|14.03.10||21:00||Berlin - Lido|
|15.03.10||21:00||Köln - Luxor|
|16.03.10||21:00||Hamburg - Stage Club|
|21.07.10||00:00||Stuttgart - jazzopen|
Using his musical mentors John Coltrane, Marvin Gaye and Billie Holiday
as compasses, he continues to successfully blur the lines between
musical genres through his love of connecting to audiences worldwide
and in the sheer joy of creation.
Blessed with a warm rich baritone reminiscent of artists of the caliber of Terry Callier, Jon Lucien and Gil-Scott Heron, José has toured internationally at venues such as the North Sea Jazz Festival, the Vitoria Jazz Festival, Billboard Live Tokyo, Centro Cultural Sao Paolo, the Hermitage St. Petersburg, Central Park Summerstage New York and London's Royal Festival Hall.
As a recording artist and guest vocalist José has worked with Junior Mance, Chico Hamilton, Gilles Peterson, Bassment Jaxx, Nicola Conte, Toshio Matsuura, Elan Mehler, The Heritage Orchestra, SOIL & "PIMP" SESSIONS, Jazzanova, Flying Lotus, Christian McBride, J.A.M., Robert Mitchell, Jazzy Sport and Simbad.
"I thought singers like this didn't exist anymore, I was wrong, José James is here to remind us why we love music so much!"
– Gilles Peterson
"Just when you think that real voices are gone and replaced by synthesized vocoders or perfectly melodined melodies, comes a real voice. A voice who's texture, tone and timbre seem to trace the history of real jazz greats. A voice that when you hear it, you know that's what defines the word voice. Ladies and Gents José James"
– King Britt
"José James is the real deal! He has the voice, poise, charisma, and stage presence. All the ingredients... making him the most exciting singer I've heard in a long time!!"
– Junior Mance
"A natural intimacy that very few people have."
– Andy Bey
"José James is a class act."
– John Fordham, The Guardian
"James has the coiled power of a great singer and the tenderness at the heart of Coltrane’s music. Quite superb."
– Stephen Graham, Jazzwise Magazine
"In an era ruled by songbook clones, the arrival of Brooklyn based vocalist José James is a breath of fresh air."
– Thomas Barlow, BBC Music
New York Times Review of the 2009 Charlie Parker Jazz Festival:
“The strongest performances of the day... belonged to the baritone singer José James. Mr. James, in his mid-20s, has made only one record so far, “The Dreamer,” full of smart, trancelike, mysterious funk. But on Saturday he showed how supremely able he is at a more traditional kind of jazz singing.
In front of a quintet including his former teacher the pianist Junior Mance, Mr. James sang standards: “Work Song,” “Georgia on My Mind,” “Body and Soul,” “Every Day I Have the Blues,” “What Is This Thing Called Love?” Each was a complete performance.
He kept his projection even, using his full cry ultra-sparely; he was focused and careful, with clear-minded improvisations that looked, in the manner of Miles Davis or Betty Carter, for the single right note. It was a show that complimented the audience’s intelligence.”
- Ben Ratliff
José James & Band:
Grant Windsor [Piano]
Neil Charles [Bass]
Richard Spaven [Drums]
Andreya Triana [Backing Vocals]