Fans of pop idol Sam Smith should be familiar with 29-year-old Reuben James‘ keyboard work for the ‘Stay With Me’ singer both in a live and studio setting. Now, the Birmingham-born keyboard maven – who co-wrote the title track of Smith’s 2017 double platinum album The Thrill Of It All – releases his first album of solo piano recordings, Piano Love 1, a five-track EP on December 2nd.
Recorded at his home studio in South East London, James gives the listener an intimate recital that consists of three original tunes and two covers. Of the latter, James serves up a gospel-infused and deeply emotive version of Bob Dylan’s ‘Make You Feel My Love’ – a song that Adele famously revived in 2008 – and a tasteful remake of the jazz standard ‘I’m Through With Love,’ a song that many associate with movie icon Marilyn Monroe. James begins the EP with a warm seasonal number, the self-written ‘Love At Christmas Time.’ The EP’s exploration of love via music continues with the haunting ‘A Mother’s Love’ and the mellow ‘Love From The Other Side.’
Reflecting on his new release, the follow-up to his 2020 EP Slow Down, James says: “I wanted to release a solo piano album as my fan base, and anyone who has ever seen me live, know that piano is my first love. It’s been a record I’ve always wanted to make since I first started playing and I finally had the time and opportunity to sit down at my piano in my home and record love songs. I did three originals and two covers with each song dedicated to different types of love. They’re all ballads and all evoke different emotions in my heart. This album is a gift to my fans and anyone who loves the piano.”
Reuben James’ Piano Love 1 EP is a digital-only release and is available from December 2nd, 2022.