June 25, 2011
The word that easily comes to mind to describe Steve James is “limitless”.
“Limitless” not just because Steve James belongs to the old-time category of “songster”… the multi-repertoired musician able to play any music requested at the drop of a hat… but because there is a wide range of instruments with which James can play that music.
While James is a complete master of blues playing (his many instructional books and videos attest to that), he is also an expert of folk styles as well. Having played with acts diverse as country guitar legend Sam McGee, rock pioneer Bo Diddley, and Memphis blues great Furry Lewis; Steve James is as equally comfortable launching into a New Orleans standard like “Buddy Bolden’s Blues” or subtly breaking your heart singing a Ray Charles number; accompanied only by himself on sparse guitar.
“Flawless fingerpicking and slide guitar, paired with an idiosyncratic writing style and an exuberant performance persona, makes Steve James come on like a full band.” –Dirty Linen
“The old masters clearly passed on the secret of achieving the blues musicians goal of ‘oneness’-that state of grace where voice, hands, guitar, bottleneck and feet coalesce and the fingers finish phrases the voice begins or vice-versa.” –Scottish Herald
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