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Jose James

The jazz voice of a generation, José James released his debut LP ‘The Dreamer’ in 2007 on Brownswood Recordings. It was crammed with smoky, low-slung jazz grooves blessed with José’s rich baritone vocals. Magnificent self-penned works nestled alongside uniquely crafted cover versions of John Coltrane, Rashaan Roland Kirk and even West Coast hip hop institution Freestyle Fellowship. Pursuing the same deeply soulful vocal jazz tradition exemplified by Babs Gonzales, Billie Holliday, Joe Williams and Leon Thomas, ‘The Dreamer’ quickly cemented Jose’s stature and raw talent within the worldwide jazz community.

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His sophomore album – ‘BLACKMAGIC’ – was moodier, edgier more sensual, drawing inspiration from the worldwide underground. Since ‘The Dreamer’ José had performed in maybe 30 countries, worked with some of the best, wisest and finest artists in the world such as Chico Hamilton and Junior Mance and he built a community of friends and fellow music-lovers all over the globe. The distance from New York to Tokyo is quickly bridged by music, as the track ‘PROMISE IN LOVE’ with DJ Mitsu The Beats of Jazzy Sport aptly demonstrates. José was keen to stress the way that this global community shaped ‘BLACKMAGIC’:

“There is community on this record and my community has grown – Minneapolis gave way to New York, while New York in turn gave way to London, Paris, Madrid, Amsterdam, Tokyo, Sao Paolo, Berlin (big up Jazzanova!), LA (yes I still need to come out I know!! I hear you too DC!), Rotterdam (North Sea Jazz Festival), Detroit (!), Barcelona, Brussels… I lived and worked in these cities – digitally, long-term, short-term, paying rent or whatever, for 2 years or so and it’s all there.”

José started the process with LA’s beat conductor supreme Flying Lotus (Warp/Brainfeeder) in April 2008: “In a phone call he changed the entire scope of my musical direction and focus – thank you man.”

Tossing ideas back and forth between the East Coast and West Coast, the pair crafted a handful of delightfully dusty, slightly dishevelled hip hop soul joints. Anchoring the album in hip hop’s boom-clap foundation, José is perfectly at ease riding FlyLo’s bumpy sketches, just as he is contributing good-time vibes to DJ Mitsu’s sunshine soundtrack ‘PROMISE IN LOVE’, blessing Moodyman’s retro jazz-funk groove ‘DETROIT LOVELETTER’, or indeed morphing Benga’s dubstep anthem ‘Emotions’ into a killer live jazz workout.

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  • ALBUMS

    FORMAT

    DATE

    BUY

  • The Dreamer Vinyl / CD / Digital
  • Desire & Love Vinyl / Digital
  • BLACKMAGIC CD / Digital
  • SINGLES

    FORMAT

    DATE

    BUY

  • White Label 12" Pressing // DELETED Vinyl
  • Vinyl
  • Vinyl / Digital
  • BLACKMAGIC EP Vinyl
  • BLACKMAGIC (Remixes) Vinyl / Digital
  • Warrior Vinyl / Digital
  • GIG DATES

    LOCATION

    DATE

  • José James at Jeanne Rimsky Theater (March 4, 2018) Port Washington, NY, US 04 / 03 / 18
  • José James at Cooking School of Aspen (March 16, 2018) Aspen, CO, US 16 / 03 / 18
  • José James at Cooking School of Aspen (March 16, 2018) Aspen, CO, US 16 / 03 / 18
  • José James at Cooking School of Aspen (March 17, 2018) Aspen, CO, US 17 / 03 / 18
  • José James at Cooking School of Aspen (March 17, 2018) Aspen, CO, US 17 / 03 / 18
  • LATEST NEWS

    DATE

  • Jose James // Blackmagic White Vinyl Edition // Out Next Week 10 / 06 / 15 view article »
  • Jose James // The Dreamer // Reissue // In Stores Today 18 / 05 / 15 view article »
  • Jose James // The Dreamer // Reissue 11 / 03 / 15 view article »