Andrew St. James is an 18-year-old singer-songwriter from the fog-enshrouded misty hills of San Francisco’s Twin Peaks.
Incorporating a beyond-his-years lyrical vision with a unique gift for melody-making, St. James’s music lands firmly in the alternative folk world, but displays a real knack for timeless songwriting skills. “I am inspired by the odd characters that I call my acquaintances,” St. James says of the colorful cast that inhabits his music. Hip street folk, Irish immigrants and Mission hipsters star in songs that exist as soundtracks to hard-lived lives.
“This album is as much about America as it is about me,” St. James says. Along with the mysteries of the West Coast, and love found and lost, deep themes of American realities populate such St. James songs.
“These songs bring up issues normally forgotten about by everyday people, and only acknowledged by the first ten minutes of the nightly news,” St. James says of tunes such as “The Lost, The Vain,” “Prayer For East Oakland,” and “Maybe It’s Time For Me To Go”.
“While many of my songs mention societal issues, others are deeply personal,” he says of songs such as “I’m All About You” and the album’s first single “Cassidy,” two tunes that live on the fringe of heartbreak.
“Despite its light qualities, ‘Cassidy’ is a dark song,” St. James says. “At the time I wrote it, a former lover of mine who had relocated to a wilderness program away from drugs, returned to my city. I still loved her and felt the urge to see her again, but it was soon evident that she had no intention of seeing me.”
Inspired by the situation, St. James says, “I recorded the song within twenty minutes of writing it. I was feeling quite excited about the whole thing and quickly recorded the song in the marble bathroom, the most sensible place in the house to record.”
Produced by St. James himself along with veteran Bay Area producer Jim Greer (a platinum record recipient for his work with Foster The People), Andrew St. James’s debut album Doldrums (Island Jar/Fortune) was released on September 24th, 2013.