James is a native of Northern Ireland and after early experience with the CWS (Carrickfergus) band he joined The Agnes Street Band in 1989. In 2002 he became the British Open Cornet champion at the first attempt and, more recently, was runner-up in the 2010 competition.
After moving to work in the Leeds-Bradford area in 2005, James played with the Sellers International band briefly before joining The Rothwell Temperance Band as principal cornetist. During this time, the band won the Cambridge International Masters, the Grand Shield and the Yorkshire Area (where James also won the soloist award). He won the Irish solo competition in 2010 & 2011 playing Rustiques and Napoli respectively and has completed a LRSM on trumpet and cornet.
James’ MMus recital from Leeds University was judged as the best in his year with repertoire including Halsey Steven’s Trumpet Sonata, Tartini’s Concerto in D and Elgar Howarth’s Concerto for Trumpet. After a year as principal cornet of the Fairey Band, James accepted the opportunity to perform as assistant and co-principal cornet at Black Dyke Band. The band won the British Open, National. and European titles in that spell. James’ performed David Catherwood’s solo ‘Blessings!’ with Dyke at Halifax Minster and he will be releasing a solo CD of the same title in the spring of 2017. All proceeds from this will go towards supporting the Tanzania Christian Farm Development Trust.
In a change of direction, in 2017 James was appointed MD of the Lindley Band. His role will begin in earnest after the Yorkshire Area contest and he will make his public debut with the band at the Whit Friday March Contests on the 9th June.
More information about James will soon be is available via his website