Critically acclaimed UK singer-songwriter James Dunne dives into his uniquely charismatic lyrical creativity to provide listeners with a gritty backdrop that carries raw truthfulness.
Not long ago, James released the brand new single “Black Train”, which centers around standing up & taking responsibility for your actions. The song presents James with the opportunity to shine a spotlight on his rich & gravelly undertones that adds layers to the strong message within.
James has kindly taken the time to speak with Fierce & Fabulous Revolution regarding his latest release & the emotional journey behind its composition. You can find the full interview below.
Hey James, thank you for this interview. Can you start by telling readers unfamiliar with your music about yourself?
James: Well, before I started attempting to make a go of this music thing, I served in the British Armed Forces (Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers) for just under a decade where I ended up deployed overseas. I’m a scruffy bugger, there are no two ways about it, honestly what you see is what you get and that is true to be said for my music. I fall into the genre of Outlaw Country and its very much a continuation of telling the authentic, raw, and unapologetic stories of the real world, carrying on the torch from the original Outlaws of old. These legends made Country music what it is today and their legacy needs to live on.
When did you first discover your passion for music?
James: Well, being from an Irish family, music was prevalent in our household growing up, from all-American Country to Irish Folk music. Mum and Dad would always be at the music halls in North London on a weekend and tell stories of the night and the music they listened to. The radio was always on and I’m from the era where you’d end up in the pub with a Coke and bag of crisps watching the bands whilst your parents had a drink or two, so I had very little option from an early age but to get sucked into it!
Have you always wanted to pursue a career within the music industry?
James: I’m not going to lie to you, music wasn’t my first calling. I spent a good chunk of my life racing motorcycles semi-professionally at the British Superbikes level. Unfortunately, I couldn’t keep up with the mental youngin’s coming through who had absolutely no fear…..and a lot more money to put into the sport. Becoming a Dad, I suddenly had other priorities. Sadly, I had to hang up my leathers and admit a gracious defeat but I don’t regret a moment of it!
How would you currently describe your musical style?
James: I would say I’m a new-wave Country Outlaw. There are those people out there not living the ‘all American dream’ that a lot of mainstream Country music glamourizes, that isn’t relatable to the working man living day to day. I understand some people may want an escape from the real world, but there are others that want to hear real songs from real people that have shared the same hardships living hand to mouth, excruciating hard work that’s broken their bodies, heartache, hard decisions, seeking redemption for unavoidable choices etc. and I feel my music is something they can take solace in, knowing they are not alone. Giving those people a voice and telling the stories that go untold.
You recently released the new single “Black Train”. How did the idea for this song come together?
James: Honestly, after a 12-hour night shift, countless cups of tea sitting on the sofa with the hound, who was most upset about me disturbing her nap time. There must have been some unconscious feelings that needed to come out because lyrically it just flowed out and the pen didn’t leave the paper.
Did you always plan to release “Black Train” as a single?
James: As soon as I wrote Black Train, I knew I wanted to release it as a single. I think it’s a track that most people can relate to. It came out so organically and didn’t require much tweaking.
What does this song personally mean to you?
James: I think it’s a reminder to always be a better man, no matter what spanners are thrown in the works, difficulties that stand in your path, spite and venom fired at you, or temptation presented at your door to distract you from the present, always fight it. I admitted my faults, and this song is about my journey to atonement and riding that Devil back to where he came from. It’s not gonna go down this time the way it has before.
What message would you like listeners to take from this song?
James: Keep trying to do it right! Everyone has done things they aren’t proud of and it may seem like an uphill struggle to be a better person, stuck in the cycle of not being able to do right for doing wrong- try as you might, so what’s the point. You’ve just gotta face your shit head-on and overcome it.
Finally, is there a message that you would like to share with the readers of Fierce & Fabulous Revolution?
James: Be unapologetically honest. I’m a huge believer in being told a hurtful truth than a beautiful lie. Be you. Only you know what it feels like to walk in your shoes. People don’t like it, that’s their problem, not yours. Be kind to those who deserve it. Respect people who have earnt it. Stand up for people that can’t always stand up for themselves. It’s that simple.
You can check out “Black Train” on Spotify below or on Apple Music here.