The kids these days. They are getting younger, wiser and more talented. Some of them are even extremely humble and kind. Specifically I am talking about Andrew St. James, a poet out of San Francisco who, at the age of 19, released his second (not his first) LP titled The Shakes in December.
He must get remarks like this all the time, but at the age of 19 I was a peon in the college theater ecosystem and making terrible decisions with regards to men.
St. James is a quintessential “old soul”. Much like his songwriting, the quality of his voice also belies his age. Gravelly and soaked with emotion, his sound has been compared to Bob Dylan and The Tallest Man On Earth, but with the spark of Jake Bugg (another phenom who draws similar comparisons).
I’ve never met Jake Bugg, but I had the pleasure of spending time with St. James two days in a row in December. First while taping a song for Balcony TV at my apartment, and then at an intimate showcase on a rooftop in Downtown LA (where a beer garden and music venue are forthcoming; everyone should get excited). His music captivated the crowd, as did his personality.
It was only in conversation that his true age finally peeked through. Earnest, yet grounded and appreciative, it is impossible not to root for him, and I intend to do so.
Los Angeles residents can catch him at Hotel Cafe on June 2, and in the meantime watch his video for “Despite All Good Intentions” here.
File Under: The Tallest Man On Earth, Bob Dylan, folk, Americana, indie, singer songwriter
Andrew St. James “Tapes”
Andrew St. James “Stageline”