José James Brings His Own Unique Jazz to Music Hall of Williamsburg

November 21st, 2013

José James grew up in Minneapolis, weaned on Prince, hip-hop and modern jazz. Upon moving to New York City to attend the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music, James (above, performing “Trouble” for KCRW FM, and, below, covering “Who Loves the Sun” as a tribute to Lou Reed), he eventually met the musicians who would become his first ensemble, backing him in the studio as he recorded his debut, The Dreamer, out in 2008, and touring with him in support of it. James has been in demand ever since, playing festivals around the world and making numerous guest appearances on other musician’s albums (even working with Flying Lotus). But he’s still continued to make his own brand of music—seamlessly mixing electronic, pop and soul sounds with jazz. No Beginning No End (stream it below), James’s fourth album, arrived early this year. About which Pitchfork proclaimed: “With previous releases, he’s earned his heroic acclaim in the tough, tried-and-trusted lanes of contemporary jazz. With No Beginning No End, he’s built his own road out.” And rather than having to go see this unique talent at, say, the Blue Note or Village Vanguard, you can see him tomorrow night at Music Hall of Williamsburg.