James' soaring new single 'You Make It Real' was written about "a significant who keeps you in check when your life is going to hell around you"... It reached No. 7 in the UK chart on its release in October 2008.
James Morrison (not to be confused with Jim Morrison from the Doors, or Jimbob from Carter The Unstoppable Sex Machine whose real name is James Morrison) was one of a large number of throaty male singers who were heavily pushed by the industry in the mid-late 2000s after the success of James Blunt. Of course, the male singer-songwriter is a type of act that record companies will always have on their books, but there seemed to be a particular drive to turn them into MOR pop stars around this time - it's notable that many of them, Morrison included, weren't quite singer-songwriters in the traditional sense as they were reliant on co-writers.
Of course, the disadvantage of this is that as most of these singers were working with several collaborators it tended to rein in their individuality; and with in-demand songwriters working for so many clients things did start to sound very samey. Listened to now, this track doesn't sound at all bad: Morrison has a decent raspy voice, even if there's something slightly unconvincing about it. There are some nice touches in the arrangement too, I do like a low electric piano. The trouble is, at the time it seemed like he released this same song too many times, and a dozen other people were releasing it as well, and however heartfelt it might actually have been it just seemed routine and contrived. I hear he's a lovely bloke and all but he seems sometimes to be trying to come over as more serious than he actually is and the end result can be bland.
Also appearing on: Now 64, 65, 72 (with Nelly Furtado), 73, 80
Available on: Totally Chick Flicks