A soulful singer/songwriter from a small English town with a penchant for crafting moving and evocative folk-pop confections in the vein of Ed Sheeran, Foy Vance, and Ben Howard, James Bay hails from the North Hertfordshire market town of Hitchin. Bay honed his skills regionally, eventually landing high-exposure support slots with Tom Odell, John Newman, and Kodaline before inking a record deal with Republic/Universal in 2012. He began recording material soon after, and charted the single "When We Were on Fire" in 2013. One year later, he landed a pair of songs in the British Top Ten; first, "Let It Go" peaked at number ten, and by the end of 2014, "Hold Back the River" hit number two (and charted in ten other countries). Bay's first full-length album, Chaos and the Calm, appeared in March 2015, in time for him to play a handful of American dates, including showcases at the South by Southwest Music Conference in Austin, Texas.
James Christopher Monger