James Arthur is a British singer and songwriter. In 2012 James won the ninth series of the popular television show, The X Factor. James is one of the most successful music artists in the show’s history. James started to write and record songs at the age of 15. At the time he independently released his own music and was a part of numerous bands like Moonlight Drive, Cue the Drama. Save Arcade, Emerald Skye, and The James Arthur Project/ The James Arthur Band. James has released many of his solo songs on music platforms like SoundCloud and YouTube.
James most recently released album, Back From The Edge, released October 28,2016 by Columbia Records, is a really personal album and definitely had that edge to it. After his winning on The X Factor, everyone has had this certain image of if, but this album I would have to say is his most intense. The lead single for the album, Say You Won’t Let Go, has to be the strongest one on the album. The whole album overall brings forward a lot of intensity. It talks about points in James life when he was suffering from a drug and alcohol addiction. He also deeply struggles with anxiety. No one can explain his single, Say You Won’t Let Go, better than he is able to. The song has peaked at number one in many countries.
James has a strong passion for writing music. It literally is his life. Everything has an influence on him, especially for the album, Back From The Edge. Some songs on this album are very personal and some are inspired by the people around him as well as imagining what their life is like and their relationships. He writes music that people are able to relate to. That everyone can put themselves in actually understand.
“ I met you in the dark
You lit me up
You made me feel as though
I was enough”
The song’s opening is very interesting. They met in a dark place, the person’s personality shined. The experience was like lighting a single match in a dark room. Metaphorically speaking, that person helped him in his darkness, “you made me feel as though I was enough.” The person gave him a sense of security in their relationship, referring to that he was enough for them and was worth it enough to be in the relationship. His partner gave him much needed strength.
“We danced the night away
We drank too much
I held your hair back when
You were throwing up”
“It’s something that everyone’s done–I don’t know anyone who hasn’t been in that situation with a friend or lover.”- James
“Then you smiled over your shoulder
For a minute, I was stone cold sober
I pulled you closer to my chest
And you asked me to stay over
I said, I already told ya
I think that you should get some rest”
“Patience is extremely important. I think a relationship has to have patience, compromise, respect as well as love and intimacy. As well as being a couple you have to retain your sense of being an individual and be able to have time on your own.”- James
“I knew I loved you then
But you’d never know
Cause I played it cool when I was scared of letting go
I knew I needed you
But I never showed
But I wanna stay with you
Until we’re grey and old
Just say you won’t let go
Just say you won’t let go”
Here James is accepting his love for them. He did not accept his feeling of love before because fear was holding him back. He was afraid that the relationship was going to quickly end. The fear is still apart of him, but he tries not holding on to it. He and his partner is agreeing on not letting the sense of fear come in between them.
“When you looked over your shoulder
For a minute, I forget that I’m older
I wanna dance with you right now, oh
And you look as beautiful as ever
And I swear that everyday you’ll get better
You make me feel this way somehow”
He is still feeling how he felt at a younger age and ways to happily dance, but can’t because of how much he has aged. Even though they are now older, his love her is still the same, if not deeper. The fact that he was enough for her, still excites him.
“I wanna live with you
Even when we’re ghosts
Cause you were always there for me
When I needed you most”
He is always wanting to spend his life her, even after death. The end for them will never come.
This album is a lot different from his previous one, but it is as enjoyable, if not a little more. This album reflects how much James has grown as both a person and an artist. He is truly an inspiration. I say that this album was pretty successful.