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Talking to James Durbin of American Idol about "Memories of A Beautiful Disaster" (Interview)


Santa Cruz CA native, James Durbin, 22, rocked the stage of “American Idol” every week with his signature high-pitched scream and touched the hearts of America throughout the season as he opened up about his Asperger and Tourette Syndrome condition.

He recently released his debut album "Memories of a Beautiful Disaster” on Wind-Up Records. James talks about his new album for an interview with LA Music Examiner, Belinda Thomas. Here are some excerpts below.

Belinda: Let's talk about the new album, “Memories of A Beautiful Disaster.” I love the title? How did you come up with that title?

James: The title is about looking back on the course of my life and memories of my life, it being a thing of beauty now in what once I thought was chaos...through the beauty and the pain. It makes me who I am today and I wouldn't be able to change that.

Belinda: You're on Wind-Up Records, who are known for launching such bands as Creed and Evanescence? How's it been being on Wind-Up so far?

James: It's been great. My whole goal in shopping for a record contract was to find a label that looked at me as more than just a number on their paycheck......Others label that we went to didn't really want to, didn't really seem to care. Their main thought was how we are going to make money off this...With Wind-Up, before I was even signed yet ... two days after I went and met with them, they called me up just to see how I was doing, to see how the tour was going. I took that to mean that they really cared, and they do really care, they still really care. They're all about me growing as an artist.... They really care about you.

Belinda: I've got to ask you, it must have been surreal working with Mick Mars of Motley Crue. What was working with him like?

James: It was great. Mick is such a character and such a real person. Coming in the studio and getting to watch Mick Mars record and getting to watch him play was so cool because he is so unique and has a unique style of playing his guitar, to getting his tone and his tuning, everything how he plays and watching him play. He's such a real person. I still stay in contact with him. He called me up to see how me and my family were doing and to wish us a Happy Thanksgiving. I enjoy talking to the guy. He's great.

Belinda: You worked on a song, “Screaming,” with David Cook, an “American Idol” winner. How did that come about?

James: I was actually on the Idol live tour and I got to New York. I knew that I was doing a co-writing session and thought I was doing it with someone else and I get in the studio and Cook's there. We're hanging out talking for like 40 minutes and then I finally turned to him and said so David what are you doing in New York, what are you doing here in the city. He said well I' m here to write with you. And I was like oh, well we wasted 40 minutes BS-ing about life and about Idol and the Idol tour and everything and immediately we got to writing. The writing process is such a studious process you really need to be focused on what you're doing to write the best material you possibly can, so we got right into it and more and more people kept showing up and we wrote the song. It's one of my favorite songs on the record. It really comes from a very special place of experience and with passion. I was bullied, beat up for a long time, from elementary school to middle school and high school, I was bullied a lot. That's what the song is about. It's a fun one to sing because I get so into it. I'm really screaming at all those people that singled me out as a kid.

James: I know there is a promotional tour happening now, but are there touring planning coming up? What are you looking forward to most with going on tour?

James: We are planning the tour for early next year, getting everything situated now. I just can't wait to get on the road can wait to play for all the people who bought the record. Plus the ones who have not bought it to give them an incentive to go out get it. It is not just a good record on your headphones with your computer...it is a fun record... I don't want to cheat my fans out of something...with an over produced record that they are not able to hear the same thing live. I want them to have the best experience.

To purchase James Durbin new cd: Memories of a Beautiful Disaster

Continue reading at Examiner: James Durbin Interview

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