Jose James’ ‘Yesterday I Had the Blues’ Out This Spring

Coming after Jose James’ recent albums, While You Were Sleeping, No Beginning, No End, and Black Magic, with explorations into rock, electronic, R&B, soul, and funk in addition to his jazz roots, James’ new project Yesterday I Had The Blues might seem like a departure. In fact, he’s returning to those jazz roots here – check out James’ versions of some John Coltrane tunes from an earlier unreleased EP. On Yesterday I Had The Blues, James’ vocals will be backed by Jason Moran on keys, John Patitucci on bass, and Eric Harland on drums (!) as they put together their interpretations of some tunes associated with Billie Holiday. The album will be released in spring of 2015. In the meantime, check out a trailer for the upcoming album and a full concert of James doing this material with a different band after the jump and start getting excited. (Be sure to stick around in this concert until about 1:16 or so, when James does a powerful looping pedal-assisted solo version of “Strange Fruit”.)

Yesterday I Had The Blues trailer:

Jose James – The Music of Billie Holiday

José James – vocals, loopstation
Takuya Kuroda – trumpet
Michael Campagna – tenor saxophone
Kris Bowers – piano
Solomon Dorsey – bass
Richard Spaven – drums

Jose James is currently touring in support of the new album:
Jan 15 – Holland Performing Arts Center, Omaha, NE
Jan 16 – Overture Center for the Arts, Madison, WI
Jan 17 – Mayo Civic Center, Rochester, MN
Jan 18 – The Promontory, Chicago, IL
Jan 20-21 – Dakota Jazz Club, Minneapolis, MN
Feb 12-15 – Billboard Live, Osaka, Japan