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Meet Cecilia James, a talented songwriter and visual artist hailing from Santa Barbara, California. Her music is a unique blend of conceptual and autobiographical writing, set to dreamy guitar-based arrangements that emphasize nuance over flashiness. Her melodies have a sweetness that fosters intimacy and a sublime feeling. 


In 2017, James released her first single, "Malibu," a breezy surf-rock tune that featured fellow Santa Barbara multi-instrumentalist and producer Maxton Hunter. Her 2018 follow-up, "Sonic Baby," showcased a more atmospheric sound palette that was driven by James' tender, velvet-like melodies and the track's psych-tinged guitar passages. After the release of "Sonic Baby," James embarked on her first tour, performing her growing collection of songs on stages across the American Southwest.


Between the latter half of 2018 and early 2020, James returned to the studio to complete the sessions for her first EP, which had been in the works for several years since the tracking of "Malibu." With the help of producer Jesse Rhodes and other musical collaborators, she finished work on her official debut, the aptly named Different Ground. This EP is a collection of deeply personal songs written between James' teenage years and early adulthood. The seven tracks offer a charming mix of confessional guitar jams and warm, jangly beach-pop that conjures up images of California's central coastline. 


As a solo artist, James frequently invites talented local musicians to join her on stage, adding variety and energy to her performances. She is also approached by other bands for collaborations on bass, an exciting prospect for her as music is her passion, and she loves sharing it with others.

The renowned area creator is known by and large as one of our region’s most promising songwriters with an incredible voice who since her early teens has won the admiration of this publication and others for her rocking, haunting sound.

- Ella Richie Demaria, Santa Barbara Independent 

For her debut single, Cecilia James is not wasting any time in
showing her talent. Her voice has the sound of Phoebe Bridgers with the soul of Joni Mitchell. 

- GRRRL Music - Kelsey Andrew

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