James began singing at the age of 5, giving his first public performance as a soloist at the Guild Hall in his home town of Grantham. There he also received his initial vocal tuition from Doreen Palmer. After moving to York in 2006, James began studying at the De Costa Academy of Singing. He has performed with other Academy pupils in concerts in a wide range of genres from Musicals to Opera. He has also sung in many local ensembles, currently a member of the Clerkes of All Saints North Street and the choir at All Saints Pavement.

In recent years, James has specialised in Oratorio and Song repetoire. In 2016 James won rosebowls at the Huddersfield (Mrs Sunderland) and Rothwell Festivals, along with the Victor Ludorum Shield for Senior Singing at the Cottingham festival. James also won Oratorio prizes at Cottingham, Grantham and Skipton and a range of song prizes in Cottingham, Huddersfield (Mrs Sunderland), Rothwell and Skipton.

James has performed as the bass soloist in Messiah with Market Rasen and District Choral Society and Lincoln Pro Musica, Pocklington Singers and choir and in East Keswick. He has also sung Elijah with the Cleckheaton Methodist Church Choir and the Bass solo in Bach's Cantata 140 with Horsforth Choral Society. In 2017, James is due to sing Stainer's Crucifixion at Howden Minster and Messiah at Huddersfield Parish Church.

Also in 2017, James is due to give a series of solo lunchtime recitals in Yorkshire and the surrounding area. He will be performing in York, Harrogate, Northallerton, Bridlington, Whitby and Boston Spa.