In Conversation with: Chris James

Chris James

Chris James, born Chris Lionel James is a Zimbabwean artist who was born in Harare and grew up in a small town called Chinhoyi, now based in South Africa.

How did you get into music?

Like many other children from Zimbabwe; parents always have a different path for their children which usually has to do with education and degrees. I managed to break free from the tender age of 17 where I found myself in a studio set up and I recorded my first ever song by the time I was 19. The song titled “Ndimakukonda” which means I love you; was the first song I recorded and featured an artist called  Jerry B a.k.a Mukanya and that’s how the Chris James musical story began.

Over the years I have worked with producers such as ANONZI XNDR,MCLYNE BEATS, RAYO BEATZ, JAE MAC, KING KUS,HERBERT FINCH and collaborated with Mile, Marques, Mc Cut, Vybz Mayor(Ghana), Whitney Cash, Team Bho, DNA(S.A), Tihwan and Mc Chita to name a few. Chris James can be classed as an RnB; Neo Soul; Pop and hip-hop artist; who takes advantage of his linguistic abilities as he writes/ dances/sings/ raps in Nyanja; Shona; English and a bit of pidgin English.

Who are your music influences?

Chris Brown, Usher, Drake, Lil Wayne and Michael Jackson.

What was it like working on your debut album Legend Status?

Working on my debut album was an exciting and fun experience, I got to learn things about my voice that I didn’t know before. It helped me get out of my comfort zone, I spent two weeks in the studio recording from afternoon up until midnight; Each day had its own inspiration.

How did your hit song Hauite come to be?

I remember last year during my set, there was this girl that had impeccable dancing skills, she stood out and had the whole club glued to her. She made the other girls that were dancing look like amateurs, the only word I had in my mind to describe her was hauite (you are too much).

Who have been your favourite producers and artists to work with and who would you like to work with in the future?

I enjoy working with MCLYNE BEATZ and MELO MUSIC because we have a mutual chemistry when it comes to making music.

I would love to work with Tammy Moyo, Ammara Brown, Wizkid and Takura. The reason why I would love to work with these four, is because I admire their ability to make every song that they are on shine, not to mention their versatility.

What have been the highlights of your career so far?

After I released my album I managed to get interviews and airplay on the biggest radio stations in Africa, TransAfrica, Xfm 94.8 UGANDA, Impulse Radio, VowFm, StarFm, Zifm, UJfm, RapRadio and also Zanj Radio from Jamaica and Diplomatic Radio in UK, I managed to do a launch for my album on the 28th of February which went well thanks to my management Reapele Entertainment.

Chris James - singer

What’s a typical studio session for you?

Me and my producer brainstorming concepts on his beats, with my manager Keith giving me moral support while I get myself into character before recording.

What’s the soundtrack to your life?  

Wizkid’s “Ojuelegba” because it resonates with what I have gone through in life.

How would you like to be remembered?

I would like to be remembered as the person that made other people believe that dreams come true and that God does answer prayers.

Follow me on:

Instagram: @chrisjames_zw_

Facebook: Chris James Zw

Twitter: @chrisjames_zw

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