I first saw James on a Roy Harper tour. He was the opening act. It was rare for Roy to have an opening act. It meant that he really rated him.
I rated him too. It was like punk folk. He was a singer songwriter with passion, poetry and attitude. Really good.
I had a chat with him on a couple of the gigs and he was a really nice humble guy with no side to him.
He produced a brilliant first album which came out on Roy’s label – The Awareness label. It sadly did not sell too well so James threw in the towel.
He later came back with a couple of brilliant albums – more subdued. Then he went down with cancer, produced a last album that bravely faced up to his predicament and was gone.
Such a sad loss.
Today I’ll play my James Varda and think of the intelligent, sensitive, compassionate man who sang those songs so full of passion.
Here’s to you James!! Makes me feel so sad thinking about you. You should be huge!