A roots musician, Mr. James is known as a modern guitar master and is an award-winning songwriter. In his newly commissioned works, he delves into his family history, connection to Maine, and his relationship to home.
Maybe it’s a particular run of notes on the guitar. Maybe a familiar sound from a banjo. We hear traditional American music and we tell ourselves a story of authenticity. Unfortunately, that story perhaps isn’t as authentic as you might think.Already Home Recordings Volume 2 Samuel James’ new collaboration with Portland Ovations challenges traditional notions of authenticity in American roots music. The name of the project refers to James’ own biracial family, filled with musicians of multiple American traditions. The project itself will feature three traditional songs presented in two separate arrangements — one solo-acoustic and the other with a full band. Both at once familiar and new, Already Home Recordings Volume 2 will be a welcomed addition to American traditions.
Media and Press
Portland Press Herald, 5-9-2022. ‘Commission accomplished: Portland performances to showcase new work funded by pandemic program’