James Bay is an English singer/songwriter hailing from Hitchin, Hertfordshire. He first became interested in guitars at the age of 11 when he borrowed an old guitar his father had brought from his uncle and kept in a cupboard. From then onwards he made it his mission to learn and play guitar like the ‘greats’ he’d seen on the TV. He joined various bands with his brother and friends but ultimately knew he wanted to be at the front; Bay decided to go solo.
At 18 he moved to Brighton initially to study fine art but changed to music. He busked all over town, played open mics every night and was eventually spotted by a London management company at his colleges’ showcase evening. After moving to London to pursue his dream Bay was once again catching the eye of certain people, one night in particular would become a career turning point for him. Whilst performing at a pub in Kentish Town a video of his set was uploaded onto youtube; it was this video that was seen by an A&R scout at Republic Records, and it was this same video which sealed the deal with Jacquire King who stated he would ‘love to work on the record’.
In 2014, his single Hold Back The River was standing at platinum and was a prior to his debut album, Chaos and the Calm (2015). It went straight to no.1 in the charts in UK and 15 in USA, it has since gone 2 x Platinum in the UK and Gold in five different countries. Chaos and the Calm was recorded with Jacquire King who has also worked with Kings of Leon, Tom Waits, Modest Mouse and many others.
James Bay has been nominated and won many awards, in February 2015 he received the ‘Critics Choice’ at the Brit Awards, ‘Best New Act’ at the Q Awards and ‘Breakthrough Solo Artist’ at GQ Men of the Year. In 2016 he received ‘Best British Male Solo Artist’ at the Brit Awards and ‘Best International Newcomer’ at Echo Music Prize. James Bay was also nominated three times at the 2016 Grammy Awards which included ‘Best Rock Song’, ‘Best New Artist’ and ‘Best Rock Album’.
He has a respectable list of musicians he has toured with and supported including The Rolling Stones at their Hyde Park show, Beth Orton, Tom Odell, Hozier, Taylor Swift and Kodaline. He is currently on a headline world tour of his album.
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