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Boney James

A solid saxophonist whose style falls on the R&B and pop side of jazz, Boney James is a consistent best-seller who can always be relied upon to put on a colorful live show. Born James Oppenheim, he grew up in New Rochelle, New York. The future Boney James studied clarinet when he was eight, switching to saxophone two years later -- the instrument which began to show his heavy influence from Grover Washington, Jr. When he was 15, his family moved to Los Angeles. James was soon playing in a fusion band (Line One) that was strong enough to open for Flora Purim and the Yellowjackets. After a year attending UC Berkeley, he transferred to UCLA so he could continue playing with the band. He earned a degree in history but became a full-time musician after graduation, doubling on keyboards.

In 1985, James went on the road as a keyboardist with Morris Day, and eventually convinced Day that he should be playing saxophone instead. He spent four years with Day and became an in-demand guest musician on tenor, alto, soprano, and flute, playing with Randy Crawford, Sheena Easton, the Isley Brothers, Bobby Caldwell, and others. (He picked up his nickname while on tour with Crawford; after mentioning to a keyboardist that he was running out of food money, the musician replied that if he ate any less, he'd have to be called Boney James.)

The saxophonist made his debut as a leader with Trust in 1992 (Spindletop), which earned him a contract with Warner Bros. two years later. While there, he recorded many popular dates, including Backbone, Seduction, Boney's Funky Christmas, Sweet Thing, Shake It Up, Ride, and Pure. In 2006, Boney made the move to Concord Records and released Shine, then in 2009, Send One Your Love. One year later, while driving home after an appearance at the Newport Jazz Festival, James was rear-ended by another vehicle. The accident totaled James' car and left him with a fractured jaw and two missing teeth -- injuries that could have ended his playing career. He recuperated, however, and in 2011 he released Contact, an album whose title referred to the profound effect the accident had on his life and career.

James re-signed with Concord in 2012. One year later, he released The Beat, an album that combined his love of R&B and Latin music. The set included guest appearances from Raheem DeVaughn and Floacist. James continued to mine his own musical history and dug further back to '80s and '90s R&B, hip-hop, and his contemporary jazz roots for Futuresoul. Released in 2015, it featured a smaller core of studio players and a guest spot from trumpeter Marquis Hill. The album debuted at number one on contemporary jazz charts and by the end of the year, it hit the top spot on the standard jazz albums chart. ~ Scott Yanow
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: Futuresoul

1. Drumline

2. Vinyl

3. A Little Attitude

4. Watchu Gon' Do About It?

5. Either Way (Feat. Stokley)

6. Hand In Hand

7. Fortuneteller

8. The Moment

9. Futuresoul

10. Far From Home (Feat. Marquis Hill)

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Track List: The Beat

1. Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing

2. Sunset Boulevard

3. Missing You

4. Batucada (The Beat)

5. Maker Of Love

6. Mari's Song

7. Powerhouse

8. The Midas (This Is Why)

9. Acalento (Lullaby)

10. You Can Count On Me

x

Track List: Contact

1. Contact

2. Close To You

3. Spin

4. When I Had The Chance

5. Cry

6. That Look On Your Face

7. Deep Time

8. I'm Waiting

9. There And Back

10. Everything Matters

x

Track List: Send One Your Love

1. Wanna Show U Sumthin'

2. Send One Your Love

3. Stop, Look, Listen (To Your Heart)

4. Touch

5. Don't Let Me Be Lonely Tonight

6. Hold On Tight

7. I'm Gonna Love You Just A Little More, Baby

8. City Of Light

9. Butter

10. I'll Be Good To You

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Track List: Pure

x

Track List: Ride

1. Heaven

2. Grand Central

3. RPM

4. Something Inside (feat. Dave Hollister)

5. So Beautiful

6. See What I'm Sayin'?

7. All About You

8. Ride (feat. Jaheim)

9. As You Are

10. This Is The Life

11. Bonus Track

x

Track List: Batucada (The Beat) (Single)

x

Track List: Either Way (Single)

5. Either Way (Feat. Stokley)

x

Track List: Maker Of Love (Single)

x

Track List: When I Had The Chance (Radio Single)

Comments

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Who could ask for more !!!
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Love him..such talent..very soothing music..
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love making music
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mikki.baker
One of the most sensual artists ever. He is so talented. I never want to stop listening to his music. One of my favorites!
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I love some Boney James , all day long. Great style, and a hellava musician.
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his shows are awesome! Saw him perform in chicago back in 2001 and it was totally off the chain! :) Love his music and he's so cute too!
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nice smooth relaxing beautiful
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Got all his music, great jazz artist
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Boney Jones is just smooth.....w i t h that SAX!!
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very good
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love what come out sax
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I became an aficionado of jazz and sax music listening to Dave Hubbard, R. Elliot, Boney James, Miles Davis , Freddy Hubbard and other great jazz musicians as I grew up, Blakely, Donaldson, Grover Washington just have a lot of love for jazz. great listening on this site.
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I LOVE THIS JAZZ
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Been listen to him for years I LOV
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Charming song
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Was lucky to see him in concert in Norfolk, Va. 11 years ago. if you get a chance to see him live, DON'T MISS IT !
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With almost 2M followers, I know why his music defines the adjective "smooth
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Listen to anytime music. ... loving it!
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I love him!!!
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anthonydessa s o
The Saxophone with a Voice
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IF YOU CAN'T GET IT ON WITH BONEY, YOU CAN'T GET IT ON
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blackknight5 7
smoooooooooo t h !!!!!!
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canada67pm
It soothes my soul��������
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love they way he makes love to his sax, love every he did Eddie Fiscaro
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He knows how to groove, love it....
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Love this song great saxophone player.
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Saw Boney James last night -- he is awesome!!!!! !
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Love this song good music!
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t.niklis
saw you years ago with bobby Caldwell need I say more nick
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gracelloyd
Love me some Boney, been to three concerts and counting!!!
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Beautiful yet elegant music!!!
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Thank you Boney!!! My favorite is RIDE...the whole CD is right now. Heaven feat. Trina Broussard is so beautiful. Loved you in Monterey a few years back, you walked up to me and play your saxs like no other. Thank you
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Soooo Relaxing ����❤️����❤️
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: ) relaxing and up lifting to say the lest....much love
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Okay
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I love any and everyting by Boney James!!!
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Baby, turn off the lights, I'll lit the fireplace, he's playing our song, let's enjoy the night
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colemantange l a
Beautiful!!! !
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This particular song is a "trademark" for Senor James. Pandora. Thanks also
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Boney James is ALWAYS AMAZING
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Boney thanks for all the great sax music. Our boys play the sax as well. Edy
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Where is cruse from "vicwilson"?
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Great performer. Looking forward to catching him again on The Smooth Jazz cruise in Feb '16. Can't wait.
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Boney,I got turned on to jazz through some rock music influenced by the sax,then I just listen to jazz now,love the sax,Boney James and Richard Elliot also,both great an fantastic
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Saw you in San Diego and I have a pic of us on my wall Love love this jazz man
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Smooth ooh yea bad yea.
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MY MAIN MAN!!!! GREAT SAX!!!
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This track is killing
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What's up 5th Ward Texas? Just chilling in Midland, Texas. Ya Boy Roney Rone(Ervin)
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Powerhouse: I think I like you, maybe just a little bit. :-) Maybe I could love you much. I don't know yet. :-)
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