James has composed for a number films, documentaries, short films, and advertisements. Born in Toronto, Ontario to a South African heritage he was introduced to music at an early age. He began studying piano, moved on to master the saxophone and soon after added the flute, guitar and clarinet to his repertoire. Since then, James has explored some more exotic instruments such as the Native American drone flute, Irish flute and penny whistle. He incorporates his experience with these various instruments into his compositions, to create unique and captivating pieces.
He attended Humber College (Toronto, ON) where he was introduced to composition for film, television and video games. There, he studied composition and jazz performance under the teachings of famous composers such as Jim McGrath and Kristjan Bergey. Throughout his degree, James collaborated with various other students by composing for a wide variety of short films and documentaries. He also composed, recorded and mixed his first EP titled Valhalla where he explores four styles of music: orchestral, rock, world and synth. Click here to listen to Valhalla.
James graduated from Humber in 2016 with Honours and recently completed the Master of Music Scoring for Film, Television and Video Games at Berklee College of Music, in Valencia, Spain. Here he is studying under the tutelage of Sergio Jiménez Lacima, Lucio Godoy, Alfons Conde and Vicente Ortiz Gimeno.
As a composer, James enjoys working with a multitude of film makers from different backgrounds. Some of his latest credits include: "Shenzhen" a Canadian documentary, "Men at War" a Canadian short film, "Bucket list" an Ecuadorian documentary, "Scarlett" a Canadian short film , "In Plain Sight" a Canadian documentary, and "Going Nowhere" a Canadian documentary, to name a few. "Scarlett" went on to win the Merit Award in the 2018 Canada Shorts Film Festival.
In his community, James is Jazz Combo Advisor and Director at Durham Jazz Bands, where he arranges and directs big bands and combos, training the next generation of Jazz musicians.
"Whenever I begin a project, I am enticed by the challenge and opportunity
to guide the viewers on their journey of discovery."
"I am fascinated by the power of music. Working in concert with the
picture it takes you on a journey of emotions, locations, and stories."
See James' CV below for more information