Interviews no image

Published on February 19th, 1998 | by Gerry Galipault

0

Jimmy James: A dance star is born

Beneath Jimmy James’ wigs, caked-on makeup and fake breasts and his on-target impersonations of Marilyn Monroe, Cher, Karen Carpenter and Patsy Cline, there was a dance music artist aching to be set free.

On Jan. 27, Interhit Records released James’ debut single, the contagious “Who Wants to Be Your Lover,” produced by the red-hot Berman Brothers (Amber, Real McCoy, She Moves). Before long, the provocative accompanying video, involving twentysomethings playing a board game called “Mystery Lover,” should pop up on MTV, VH1 and The Box.

Life may be a cabaret, old chum, but for James, it was just one step toward his lifelong dream.

“I’ve had this passion for years,” James said recently, “but I was so stuck with the Marilyn thing that I kept getting gigs, and I couldn’t turn them down. There were lots of gigs to be done and I had people to pay. Suddenly, I had this little industry going with me dependent on being Marilyn and all the voices.

“I was very good at it, but deep inside … I always played dance clubs, because I didn’t like the cabaret world. I loved going to the dance clubs, doing my show, so I treated myself like I was a dance artist even before I had a record. After my shows, I would always go to the DJ booth and get to know the DJs and ask them lots of questions, like who they know is good in the business.”

A native of San Antonio, Texas, James moved four years ago to New York, where he honed his female impersonations and gained national and international exposure. On the side, he made a few demos. Nothing substantial, he said.

“Then I finally met someone at Warner/Chappell publishing,” James said. “He literally took me by the hand and led to the right producers, which were the Berman Brothers. We located a song, and I had a lot of fun doing it and was blown away by the production. I wanted not only an underground dance thing, but I wanted it to be radio dance ready, and the Berman Brothers know exactly how to do that. I was very lucky.”

James glows when recounting the reaction he got from Warner/Chappell representatives when he performed “It’s Morning Again,” a song he wrote for a future album.

“It’s an amazing song,” James said. “I closed my eyes and sang the song in one take and it was written. I never wrote down the words. They laid down some music for me and then I said, ‘Just let me get out there, and I don’t know what’s going to come out, but there’s something I want to say.’ I was going through some heavy shit that summer.

“They freaked out over it at Warner/Chappell. I’m hoping that Giorgio Moroder will want to produce it.”

Tags: ,


About the Author

Gerry Galipault debuted Pause & Play online in October 1997. Since then, it has become the definitive place for CD-release dates — with a worldwide audience.



Comments are closed.

Back to Top ↑
  • BEST OF THE WEB

     

    Entertainment Weekly names Pause & Play one of “the 100 greatest Web sites”

  • Album Release Dates

    * Release dates are subject to change due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic

    May 14, 2021 » St. Vincent, The Black Keys, Alan Jackson, Paul Weller, The Chills, Juliana Hatfield, David Gray, Delta Goodrem, Rodrigo y Gabriela, Morcheeba, Frost*, Sunbomb,etc.

    May 21, 2021 » Blake Shelton, Olivia Rodrigo, P!nk, twenty one pilots, Chrissie Hynde, Counting Crows, Gary Numan, John Hiatt with The Jerry Douglas Band, Mat Kearney, Lambchop, Paula Cole, Micky Dolenz, Lord Huron, Mdou Moctar, Monster Magnet, Robert Finley, Allison Russell, etc.

    May 28, 2021 » DMX, k.d. lang, Moby, Ashley McBryde, Texas, Del Amitri, Shannon McNally, easy life, The Veronicas, Porter Robinson, Miloš Karadaglić, Dave Holland, John Hall, Dispatch, Blackberry Smoke, etc.

    June 4, 2021 » Rise Against, Crowded House, Tomorrow x Together, Billy F Gibbons, Brett Young, Liz Phair, James, Chris Thile, Rostam, Japanese Breakfast, Mark Collie, Atreyu, Gary Louris, Tristen, Riley Clemmons, Butcher Brown, etc.

    More New Releases » June 11 and Beyond: Maroon 5, MARINA, Garbage, Sleater-Kinney, Ryan Adams, Migos, Wolf Alice, AFI, King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard, Dennis DeYoung, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real, Cold Cave, Joe Bonamassa, Islands, Alessandro Cortini, Danny Elfman, Gary Kemp, Fear Factory, Amythyst Kiah, Rebelution, Amy Helm, Jennifer Nettles, The Mountain Goats, Gary Allan, Pom Pom Squad, Toto, Lucy Dacus, Cedric Burnside, Buckcherry, Tom Odell, Beartooth, Lana Del Rey, Laura Mvula, The Wallflowers, Lucinda Williams, The Maine, Wavves, Tedeschi Trucks Band, James Vincent McMorrow, Ida Mae, Paul McCartney, Rodney Crowell, Leon Bridges, DARKSIDE, Joshua Radin, Erika de Casier, Billie Eilish, Los Lobos, Yola, Blues Traveler, The Wandering Hearts, Will Young, Ellen Foley, Jungle, Maggie Rose, Jake Bugg, Villagers, Anderson East, Shannon and the Clams, Manic Street Preachers, Little Simz, Candlebox, Black Veil Brides, and many more.

    More Upcoming Releases » Albums coming in 2021 and 2022 but yet to be scheduled

    Elton John loves Pauseandplay.comDeals of the DayBest SellersSennheiser MOMENTUM 2 Wireless Over-Ear HeadphonesIE 400 Pro In-Ear Monitors

  • New Merch at Hot TopicSave on Tablets at Walmart.comBand T-ShirtsTurntables & AccessoriesHome Audio SystemsAmazon Tap $40 OffSave up to 90% on Textbooks

    NOTE: Pauseandplay.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. We also participate in other affiliate programs.

  • Love Pauseandplay.com? We do, too … Help us keep it going. (Every little bit helps.) We ♥ u.




  • Recent Posts

  • Connect on Facebook

  • On Twitter