Chapman James
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Chapman James

Hoover, Alabama, United States | Established. Jan 01, 1985 | SELF

Hoover, Alabama, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 1985
Solo Folk Singer/Songwriter


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Chapman James"

Review by: Bill Wright


Having heard too many over produced, over equalized, effects laden tracks in the last few years, I have become a bit jaded regarding the current state of vocal pop and folk music. As a result, I get a great sense of relief and satisfaction when I hear a singer / songwriter that understands what melody, rhythm, and message is all about. “Dyin’ Man� by Chapman James, finds a solid place near the top of the food chain within this realm. As a songwriter / performer, this artist restores my faith in the muse within an artist that allows true expression through music.

Chapman James has a distinctive, memorable quality to his voice with only a hint of similarity and style to early Harry Chapin. On this track in particular, the vocal is crisp, clear, and makes for great listening. The lyrics are well thought out, and that translates to storytelling at its best! The analogy between lost love and death is expressed in a fresh way that prevents it from turning ‘corny’.

The song consists of just a vocal line, and some rather decent guitar work. I might take some small exception with the recording quality, but I’m sure that it is just the rendering to MP3, that is the culprit. Since I am a headphone listening freak, I would have added another microphone on the guitar, to help create a more ‘spatial’ feel to the instrument.

This is a great track. I have listened to some of his other available songs, and I really wish that this artist had CD’s that could be purchased. Take the time to give your ears some welcome sonic nourishment and give a listen to ‘Dyin Man’.

Bill Wright

PennyWhistle Androids

Charisma: 8.00
Technical Skill: 8.50
Interest: 8.00
Lyrics: 10.00
Performance: 9.00
Arrangement: 9.00
Recording Quality: 7.00
Long Term Appeal: 9.00
OVERALL: 8.60 -

"Roulette Wheel"

Review by: David Moon


Ok, here is a track that is believable. I can almost hear the slot machines in the background. This is the song you listen to on a night of revenge & trouble after you find that your girl has left you for someone else. I can hear some Jim Croce influence and wish he were still here to add some of his unique imagery to this tale. Overall, there is the essential broken spirit needed for the theme of this song.

Now for the production, I wish I could take all the players and put them in a big Nashville studio room and record the song again- live. The guitar overdub sounds like a guitar overdub. The guitar is too far out front in the mix. I love blues boogie-woogie piano, but I wish it had been balanced better in the mix with the guitar tracks. The vocal track is over-modulated and near distortion. The rhythm tracks are good and tight, but the ending is too loose for a record.

I think people will find themselves tapping their feet to this one. This song and the technical ability of the players is ready to be taken to the studio for the finished goods. I’d caution Chapman to find a unique production for his vocal tracks to help move away from sounding to much like Croce. I think it is time for Chapman James to take his spin on the musical roulette wheel. I’ll take $50 on black.

Charisma: 8.00
Technical Skill: 7.50
Structure: 6.50
Interest: 7.50
Melody: 7.00
Lyrics: 5.50
Performance: 8.00
Arrangement: 7.50
Recording Quality: 5.00
Long Term Appeal: 7.00
OVERALL: 7.00 -

"Music Supporters"

Chapman James creates detailed stories in his songs, which combine the best elements of the folk and country genres. His harmonies are unique and original; the depth in his writing is refreshing and thought provoking. His powerful folk and blues tunes are instant classics, integrating straightforward hookiness and sophisticated storytelling in his tight but not overly manufactured sound. Chapman is also a folk music critic and top Song Scout at He is based out of the Midwest. -


Dyin Man - 1991 (out of Print) Polhemusic Publishing

Live at the Von Braun - 2009 Polhemusic Publishing Amazon Music

Presenstentialist Prime - 2013 Polhemusic Publishing Amazon Music

The Tao of Spoon - 2016 Polhemusic Publishing Amazon Music



Chapman's roots have always been buried in folk music where he offers vignettes of the world around us and questions our own priorities within. If his bio seems vague, it's only because he finds so many other lives far more interesting than his own so, don't be surprised if you hear a new song that strangely sounds like your life within days of describing some personal experience to a complete stranger in a pub off the beaten track...

Born James Chapman Polhemus in Stuttgart Germany and brought up nicknmed 'Buddy' in the deep southeast, Chapman has had unique insights into the development of a Folk musician.

Whether it's the sound of water running over river rocks, the lonesomeness of a sandwiche rather than leftovers for lunch or the view of war thru the eyes of a 4 year old boy, Chapman's songs are honest and simple. He admits: "Choosing among frames for artwork has never been my passion, that's for the talented producers & cover artists"