Born in 1976 and married to artist Danielle Simonson. We've been blessed with two children, Jean & John. I live an exciting lifestyle as a full time American Bass Player living in Detroit. I'm into Soul, Afro Beat, Brazilian, Cuban, some traditional Country/Americana mixed with Weather Report and various Jazz styles from the 70's and early 80's. I collect vinyl and have owned a considerable amount of old Fender basses.
If you have a need for bass tracks, upright or electric, please send me a message. I'd be more than happy to check out what you have going on and get files back to you quickly.
2019 Detroit Music Award winner for best world album "Realities"
Besides having traveled and performed around the world as Music Director for Verve/Universal artist Bettye Lavette, being 2019’s headliner for the Chicago Blues Fest, James is also the jazz upright and electric bassist for the Detroit Symphony and The Detroit Opera House. Has performed with Aretha Franklin, Andrea Bocelli, Patti Smith, Robert Gordon and spent a year traveling with the worlds best-selling stage show, The Lion King. He has also backed Jeff Lorber, David Sanborn, Bob James, Earl Klugh, Larry Carlton and Kenny G via Alexander Zonjic. Was recently used as principal bassist for The Who’s 2019 Orchestra Tour, The Eagles 2022 tour and backed Stanley Clarke at the Detroit Jazz Fest for Boyz N The Hood. A performer on the final week of the David Letterman show with Bettye LaVette. Latest recordings include Motown guitarist Dennis Coffey's latest dbl. LP, last 2 albums from Jeremy Spencer (Fleetwood Mac) a dbl. LP release as well. The last 3 albums with Detroit Blues Legend, Johnnie Bassett. The "Honest Woman" album for Thornetta Davis, and various jingles for Ford Trucks. James is a member of Sean Blackman's world fusion "In Transit" band and is a founding member of multi award winning band, The Brothers Groove. Other various projects with Detroit world music trio AUDIO : BIRDS and a recent major label release with British guitarist, Joanne Shaw Taylor. While during the pandemic, James has participated on line with the Detroit Jazz Fest, The Don Was Concert of Colors, and Twilight:Gods - an opera performed in a Detroit multi level parking garage with stories featured in the New York Times and Wall Street Journal.
Larry Fratangelo & Sean Blackman
With Amp Fiddler, Dave McMurray, Larry Fratangelo & Ron Otis
Queen Of The Blues
Motown Studio Legend
Detroit's #1 Blues Man
A shout goes out to Al Sutton from Acme Audio. Chief engineer and developer of the Motown DI, the best sounding passive DI on the market. I felt honored to beta test this all passive, fat sounding transformer that recreates the A11J from Motown and other classic soul studios. I just received Al’s prototype recreation of the original, all tube, Motown channel strip. It’s remarkable. There’s nothing like it out there.
I use Ernie Ball Sliky Bass Strings on a variety of old Fender basses and of course my Stingray! A special thanks to Derek Brooks and all the nice folks at Ernie Ball.
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