House by the Railroad Christopher James

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Album including Album cover


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FLAC 88.2 $ 12.00
  • 1West by Northwest02:45
  • 2High Desert04:01
  • 3(Looking for) The Heart of Saturday Night03:51
  • 4Highway 9703:27
  • 5Mirage01:40
  • 6JJ03:34
  • 7The Other Side03:06
  • 8The Grey Hat02:43
  • 9Cathedral01:57
  • 10Anywhere from Nowhere02:44
  • 11Chandler (Noir)02:09
  • 12On the QT03:02
  • 13Transfiguration02:11
  • Total Runtime37:10

Info for House by the Railroad

Most of late 2013 and 2014 was dedicated to helping my parents, both of whom were failing. A great deal of time was spent in Portland, Oregon reflecting on their circumstances and our family’s history. Music began flowing like water and I needed to record these ideas but what form would they take? I was also unsure about making this another Val Gardena album. Jeff, my long time music partner, was extremely busy and bringing him into such a personal project seemed inappropriate. After 40 years of writing music I took the plunge and made my first solo album. Bob Stark was a perfect partner, providing emotional and musical support, compositional ideas and the grounded environment that proved perfectly suited to the material. House by the Railroad is an autobiographical journey but it is ultimately about life, love and hope.

"Songwriters know those moments when the music seems to write itself. This was one of those moments for me. I was thinking of my mother, who was close to passing when I sat down at the piano. An hour later, my sister called to say she had slipped into a coma, and I flew out immediately to be with her. I made it just in time to say goodbye." (Christopher James)

Christopher James, piano

Christopher James
(born Christopher James Roberts) is an American composer, producer (Paula Cole, Renée Fleming, Val Gardena) and ex-CEO of Universal Music Group’s Classical and Jazz division. An accomplished classical pianist, he earned a B.A. in Music and German Literature at Lewis and Clark College in his hometown of Portland, Oregon. His graduate studies in Musicology at the University of Illinois took him to Germany for post-graduate research. He stayed, and for several years he composed and produced music for the German film and television industry. With a style reflecting pop, as well as his classical and jazz training, Mr. James’s music was heard in prime time on various German National TV networks. Musical influences include Elton John, Burt Bacharach, Brian Eno, Jimmy Webb, John Barry, George Gershwin, Bach, Chopin, Ravel, and Stravinsky.

In 1988 a unique opportunity presented itself when PolyGram Records was refocusing its strategy on International markets. Roberts was brought on board to lead this effort in New York City. Five years later he was promoted to President of Classical and Jazz Music. During his tenure, Christopher oversaw the worlds largest and most successful classical and jazz label group while working with, and signing, some of the genre’s greatest artists, including Luciano Pavarotti, The Three Tenors, Renèe Fleming, Anna Netrebko, Lang Lang, Chris Botti and Andrea Bocelli. Additionally, he was executive producer on some of the most successful albums of the past twenty five years including Sting’s On a Winters Night, Gladiator (soundtrack), Wicked (Broadway Cast and Grammy winner), Spamalot (Broadway Cast and Grammy™ winner) and The Boy from Oz featuring Hugh Jackman.

During the 1990’s, Christopher James quietly continued composing with his group Val Gardena releasing three albums for Mercury Records including a top 10 single “Northern Lights”.

James is now re-dedicating himself to his true passion of composing and making new recordings. Over the last five years he has released four albums: A Different Place, A Different time; Synesthesia; House by the Railroad and the new album, The Sad Waltz, produced with his long term collaborators; Bob Stark and grammy award winning engineer, Kevin Killen.

Christopher James’ owns all his master recordings and publishing rights and composes works across multi-genres for synch and licensing use. He is also available as a producer/composer for hire.

This album contains no booklet.

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