The internet literally blew up a few days ago as Showtime Management released the announcement to the press that singer-songwriter and guitarist James Morrison is set to tour SA in January 2019.
Jame’s two-city concert tour begins at Montecasino’s Teatro with 8pm concerts on Tuesday, 22 January and Wednesday, 23 January thereafter heading down to Cape Town.
He burst onto the scene as a soulful singer-songwriter in 2006 and even he couldn’t have predicted that he would become the template that allowed a wave of likeminded musicians to enter the field. Now, almost ten years on, Sam Smith, Ed Sheeran, George Ezra and James Bay are all crowding the charts, following the same format; one guy with a great, soulful voice and a guitar.
They’ve all cited him as an influence but does Morrison take some credit for paving the way? “I don’t really see it like that, I was just lucky to be one of the first” says Morrison. “I’m super excited to be heading to South Africa for a few shows next year! It’ll be my first time playing there and my first gigs in a little while, can’t wait to play in Johannesburg and then with the mountains as the backdrop in Cape Town’s Botanical Garden” says James Morrison.
Pop gems like ‘You Give Me Something’ from his first record ‘Undiscovered’, made him anything but and he won the 2007 BRIT Award for Best Male when he was just 21 years old. He was also told by the veteran soul producer Jerry Wexler that his raspy, gravelly voice, the product of a childhood illness, had its “own thumbprint” and was so distinctive that “once heard, never forgotten”.
2008’s ‘Songs for You, Truths for Me’ brought with it a string of Top Ten singles, including the phenomenally catchy ‘Broken Strings’ with Nelly Furtado, with his last album, 2011’s ‘Awakening’ shooting straight to number one, selling over one million copies worldwide.
He has collaborated with Jason Mraz on the track “Details in the Fabric” on Mraz’s studio album, We Sing. We Dance. We Steal Things. Morrison worked on Demi Lovato’s third album Unbroken, released in 2011.
The 34-year-old singer-songwriter has now sold 4.5 million copies of his three albums, performed four world tours including sold-out shows to thousands at London’s Hyde Park, supporting both Bruce Springsteen and Stevie Wonder and appeared on Herbie Hancock’s Grammy-winning album ‘The Imagination Project’.
Johannesburg: Montecasino’s Teatro
8pm – Tuesday, 22 January and Wednesday, 23 January