Episode 034 : JAMES
Friday, December 3rd, 2021
CLINIK: Why did you choose to go by the name JAMES?
JAMES: I’ve been called Jake my whole life but my legal name is James. The name has always intrigued me because that’s who I really am (even though I’ve never been called it). It felt right to finally embrace that name as me.
C: How has Philadelphia influenced your outlook on music, if at all?
J: Philadelphia has been great for my outlook on music. It’s helped me find peers and feel more a part of a music “community”. The Philadelphia area is full of talented artists; being able to have people like that to relate to and share in a passion goes a long way.
C: What initially inspired you to produce original music?
J: Thanks to my parents I’ve been listening to music as long as I can remember. It’s always captivated me and been extremely important to me - but I never thought it was feasible as a career. Once I graduated college and started a “real job” I was not at all feeling fulfilled. So I decided to dive head first into music. I’d say a combination of loving music my whole life and feeling like another career wasn’t going to cut it for me is what inspired me to start producing.
C: You played a show with Tchami in Philadelphia back in November. How did that performance opportunity come about?
J: A few years ago (before I was into producing) I met a promoter from a Philly Nightclub named Ben. I got his contact info for buying tickets at the time. Fast forward a year or so and I’m producing music, sending him tracks I’ve been working on. Once I got to a point where I was comfortable DJ’ing I let him know – telling him if there was ever room for an opening spot I’d gladly fill it. It took some time but I eventually got put on to open for Malaa, which went well enough to get asked back for Tchami. Bottom line – the connections you make are super important! In all aspects of life, whether you are a musician or not.
C: How would you describe your music to someone who has never heard it before?
J: I’d say my music is spacey and passionate. I’ve always had a sense of wonder and amazement towards music – I try to capture that feeling in what I make.
C: You have a number of remixes that have gained traction on SoundCloud, such as your flip of ZEDD’s “Clarity” and Kid Laroi’s “Without You”. Which of your remixes would you say is your favorite, and why?
J: My remix of Zedd’s Clarity is probably my favorite. This is one of the first tracks that got me into dance music so it has a special place in my heart.
C: Who are some of your favorite artists from other genres outside of electronic music?
J: Two Door Cinema Club, Passion Pit, Kings Of Leon, The Lumineers, and The Killers to name a few. The “I love alternative music” starter pack.
C: When you’re not busy creating music, how do you like to spend your time?
J: I’m a big movie guy. I’ve watched more than I can count and always look forward to new releases. I recently got into watching twitch streamers too (mainly for Apex Legends). Staying active is also important to me and I try to work out a few times a week (or go hiking – big nature guy!!). Since I’m cooped up in my room producing so much I’d probably waste away to nothing if I didn’t stay active.
C: Where is one place in the world that you would like to perform some day?
J: I’d say Ultra Music festival is up there for me. I went there for the first time in 2019, and while it wasn’t the first EDM festival I attended, it was the first one that really captivated me. The whole thing was absolutely spectacular. To play there one day would be a dream come true.
C: What are some of your long term goals for the JAMES project?
J: Music has had such a positive impact on my life and I want to pay that forward in the music that I make. If my music can have a positive impact on other’s lives I’d say I’ve succeeded as a musician and hit a big goal of mine. As far as more concrete long term goals I’d love to get to the point where I can do my own tour. That’d require a lot of people liking my music so we’ll see lol.