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Michael James (producer)

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Also known as  Michael James
Years active  1981–present

Name  Michael James
Role  Recording Engineer
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Birth name  Michael James Marchesano
Born  February 1, 1962 (age 53) Long Island, New York, U.S. (1962-02-01)
Occupation(s)  record producer, mixing engineer
Instruments  electric guitar, keyboard
Labels  Warner Music Discovery Alternator Records
Genres  Rock music, Pop music, Punk rock, Hard rock, Jazz, Singer-songwriter
Associated acts  Robben Ford, Edwin McCain, A. J. Croce
Similar People  Rob Chiarelli, Maia Sharp, A J Croce, New Radicals, Gregg Alexander

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Michael James (born Michael James Marchesano; February 1, 1962) is an American record producer, mixing engineer, guitarist, and former A&R executive. James has produced and/or mixed albums for New Radicals, Too Much Joy, Hole, L7, Maia Sharp, and A.J. Croce, among others.


Early life

James was born to Elizabeth (née Powers) and Roy Marchesano and raised in New York City. James' father was first tenor in the famous Doo Wop group the Chaperones, which gave James his first exposure to music. As a young child, his parents divorced and James lived for three years (along with his mother) with the Diablo Motorcycle Club. At age eleven, James' family moved to California to get away from the Diablos, but soon thereafter James' mother became addicted to drugs, and the lack of parental support left him homeless several times during his adolescence. At age nineteen, James was signed to his first record deal with Ear Movie Records, a label owned by Ethan James, but his early career stalled when Michael turned down a major label deal to attend UCLA on a full scholarship. Still, James' first single, "She Said Yes," recorded for $15 in studio time, was released in 1983 as part of the first volume of the Radio Tokyo Tapes. In 1985 James formed the band Waves of Grain with Luke Lohnes from The Last. The group released the critically acclaimed album "The West Was Fun" before dissolving. After college, James turned his attention back to music, working as an engineer at Radio Tokyo Studios in the 1980s and becoming the studio's chief engineer by 1990.

Mainstream success

James got his first big break producing Too Much Joy's sophomore album "Son of Sam I Am," the first release on Irving Azoff's newly formed Giant Records. The following year, James produced and engineered L7's second album, "Smell the Magic", released on the Sub Pop label. This led to a relationship with Sub Pop, for whom James would later produce and engineer Hole's second single, "Dicknail" and The Reverend Horton Heat's "Speed Demon." James' successful early production work led to a brief side career as head of A&R for Warner Music Discovery. When Discovery was folded into Warner Music Group, James further diversified his musical endeavors, creating the independent record label Alternator Records. He also continued mixing and producing records, amassing more than 100 credits in the period between 1994 and 1997. In 1998, James engineered and mixed the RIAA platinum certified debut album by New Radicals, "Maybe You've Been Brainwashed Too", on which he also played electric guitar. James' involvement in the industry continued at a fast pace, including production and writing credits on A.J. Croce's 2000 album "Transit" and Maia Sharp's eponymous 2002 album.

Recent work

In 2009, James founded IndieProMix with Rob Chiarelli, which offers mixing services with engineers including James as well as David Kahne (Paul McCartney, Stevie Nicks, The Strokes), Matt Forger (Michael Jackson), Tony Shepperd (Madonna, Whitney Houston, Take 6) and Nick Page (B.B. King, Fuel, Pete Yorn). James currently mixes and/or produces more than 250 songs a year, many for independent musicians, including Edwin McCain's "Mercy Bound," and Far's final album before disbanding, "At Night We Live", among others.

Personal life

James' most prominent hobby is bicycle racing, and in 2002, at the age of 40, he was a member of the Mercury Cycling team. James has also been featured as a guest writer for Billboard magazine, writing articles warning of potential changes due to a lack of innovation in A&R and the music industry long before digital downloads and file sharing caused a sharp decline in record sales in the 21st century. In 1991, he married Irina Irvine, a former actress turned microbial ecologist. He identifies as Bahá'í.

Selected Discography

  • New Radicals - Maybe You've Been Brainwashed Too - Guitar, Mixing, Engineering
  • Edwin McCain - Mercy Bound - Mixing
  • The Coronas - Dreaming Again (radio remix) - Mixing
  • The Coronas - Upcoming LP Release (CD & Vinyl) - Mixing
  • Maia Sharp - Change The Ending - Mixing
  • Valentino Is Dead - Mis-Adventures In Punk Rock - Mixing
  • Danielle LoPresti & Masses - Run With It - Writer, Guitar, Keyboards, Mixing,
  • Saucy Monky - Trophy Girl, Part 1 - Mixing
  • Far - At Night We Live - Mixing
  • Far - Deafening - Mixing
  • Far - If You Cared Enough - Mixing
  • Far - When I Could See - Mixing
  • Far - At Night We Live (7” remix) - Mixing
  • Overbreaker - Follow The Rabbit Down The Hole - Writer, Mixing
  • Butterfly Boucher - Another White Dash - Remix - Mixing, Keyboards
  • Butterfly Boucher - Soulback - Remix - Mixing, Guitar
  • A.J. Croce - Transit - Producer, Engineer, Mixing, Guitar
  • Robben Ford - Blue Moon - Remixing
  • Robben Ford - Don’t Deny Your Love: Remix - Mixing
  • Robben Ford - Indianola - Mixing
  • Maia Sharp - Maia Sharp - Mixing
  • Maia Sharp - Willing To Burn -Single - Remixing
  • Too Much Joy - Son of Sam I Am - Producer, Engineer, Guitar, Keyboards
  • Too Much Joy - That’s A Lie and Other Joy - Producer, Engineer, Mixing, Keyboards
  • Too Much Joy - Besides - Producer, Engineer, Mixing
  • Reverend Horton Heat - Speed Demon - Producer, Engineer, Mixing
  • Hole - Dicknail - Single - Producer, Engineer
  • Hole - Burn Black - Single - Producer, Engineer
  • Hole - My Body The Hand Grenade - Producer, Engineer
  • GPS - Window To The Soul - Mixing
  • Geraldine Fibbers - Live From Bottom of The Hill - Mixing
  • Chicago - Live From the Aerie Crown Theater, Remixing for DVD
  • Chicago - CD USA: America’s Party 12/31/2006 Surround - Mixing
  • Jane’s Addiction - The Gift (Movie) - Engineer
  • L7 - Smell The Magic - Producer, Engineer, Mixing
  • L7 - American Society - Producer, Engineer, Mixing
  • Jawbreaker - Busy - Single - Producer, Engineer, Mixing
  • Jawbreaker - Whack & Blite EP - Producer, Engineer, Mixing
  • Jawbreaker - Unfun - Producer, Engineer, Mixing
  • Jawbreaker - Etc. - Engineer
  • Artificial Joy Club - Skywriting - Single - Remixing, Producer, Guitar
  • Artificial Joy Club - Spaceman - Single - Remixing, Producer, Guitar
  • Mike Finnegan, et al. - Organ-ized: An All - Star Tribute... - Mixing
  • Robert Hicks & Pete Rugolo - Textures In Hi-Fi -Producer, Mixing, A&R, Guitar
  • Robert Hicks - New Standards - Engineer, Mixing
  • Rob Laufer - Wonderwood - Producer, Mixing, A&R, Guitar
  • Sal's Birdland - Nude Photos Inside - Producer, Mixing, A&R
  • The Crash Poets - Big Bang Theory - Producer, Engineer, Mixing, Guitar
  • Danielle LoPresti & Masses - Outloud - Mixing, Writer
  • Danielle LoPresti & Masses - 22 Mountains - Mixing
  • Danielle LoPresti - Dear Mr. Penis Head - Mixing, Executive Producer, Writer, Guitar
  • South of Houston (SoHo) - Live & Learn - Producer, Mixing, Writer, Guitar
  • Roy Ashen - Sugar and Gasoline - Producer, Engineer, Mixing, Writer, Keyboards
  • Brian Charles - Sadder Day Dreaming - Producer, Engineer
  • Sylvia Juncosa - Nature - Engineer, Guitar
  • The Maxfield Rabbit - Evermore - Producer, Writer, Guitar
  • Lisa Wong - Doin' My Thing - Engineer, Guitar
  • The Mystery Band - Insert Title Here - Engineer
  • Pitchfork - Eucalyptus / Saturn Outhouse - Producer, Engineer
  • Pitchfork - Saturn Outhouse EP - Producer, Engineer
  • Screaming Sirens - Voodoo - Engineer
  • The Painkillers - Intoxication Of Life - Writer
  • Zoo Story - Hey God - Mixing
  • Sean Hall - Thirst - Mixing, Engineer, Guitar
  • The Invisible Man - The Invisible Man - Producer, Engineer, Mixing, Guitar
  • Trash Can School - Sick Jokes and Wet Dreams - Producer, Engineer, Mixing, Keyboards
  • Blend - Blend - Mixing
  • Julia Albert - More Real Than This - Producer, Mixing, Engineer, Guitar, Keyboards, Writer
  • Sean Hall - Oxygen - Producer, Mixing, Engineer, Guitar Keyboards
  • Karisa Winett - Pound 4 Pound - Producer, Mixing, Engineer, Guitar, Keyboards, Writer
  • Brett Mikels - Deep Enough - Producer, Mixing
  • Various Artists - The Big One: S.F. & L.A. - Producer, Engineer, Mixing
  • Jabberwock - Southland - Producer, Mixing
  • Jabberwock - Letterbomb - Producer, Mixing, Guitar
  • Veneer - On That Note - Mixing
  • Wishnefsky - Sin Tax - Mixing, Guitar
  • Phunk Junkeez - What's The Time remix - Mixing
  • References

    Michael James (producer) Wikipedia

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