James Bradshaw, BMus Popular Music Vocals
Why did you choose to study at the RNCM?
I was doing a competition in high school and one of the piano tutors from the RNCM was the adjudicator and she got me in touch with the Head of Junior RNCM. From Junior RNCM I heard about the buzz of the pop course. I went to an open day and I have a couple of friends who spoke really well about the course, and I just went for it.
What genre of music do you perform?
I do a mixture. I started off doing swing and jazz, covering the likes of Bublé and Sinatra, and when I went to Junior RNCM I started doing a bit more classical and working with technique. Because I played piano I did a lot of piano vocal gigs and through that I did more soul/ pop. Nowadays it’s a hybrid of all of those. I write my own music and it’s a combination of jazz and soul.
What’s your favourite thing about RNCM?
I couldn’t pinpoint a favourite thing. The whole week of lectures itself is exciting for me – whether it’s Principal Study or Ensemble Practice. The timetable has a really good balance. It’s not too full on but you do enough of everything. I’ve always liked working with bands and collaborating with other musicians. Love improvising, love song-writing, and also I’m a bit of a theory nerd behind the scenes!
What has been your highlight?
A masterclass with Dominic Miller was so, so inspiring; his ideas on music and his perspective was so insightful, and I could relate to it. That was possibly one of the most exciting experiences I’ve had with another musician ever.
What are your career aspirations?
I’d be lying if I told you that I had a definite plan, but it’s obviously within music. The main aim would be to be performing music with my own band all over the world, and recording. Also, just being immersed in music and music creation, whether that is me collaborating with another artist and writing chords and melodies with them for their music, or whether its performing my own, which would be the ideal scenario.
What gigs have you been involved in while at RNCM?
I have performed with the RNCM Session Orchestra twice in the RNCM Theatre. I have a potential gig coming up this month in Vienna, to play at a corporate event – someone recommended me through RNCM Professional Engagements. At College events, I have performed at Manchester Academy and Band on The Wall.