Artist Profile: Stephanie James Paves the Way Towards Her Destiny

Stephanie James Photo

Stephanie James performs a mix of originals and covers at a Berklee Caf Show last spring. // Photo by Belinda Huang

By Belinda Huang

Stephanie James is no doubt the real deal. While it’s easy to find singers with big dreams, it’s extremely rare to find singers who are actively making their dreams come to life—and that is exactly what Stephanie is doing. More than just a singer, Pro Music major and rising senior Stephanie Parsons has made herself an artist, performing under the stage name Stephanie James.

“I wanted a different persona onstage,” she explained. “My grandfather’s name is James, and we used to sing together. He was the first one who told my mom that I had a gift.”

She has made big moves in launching her career this past year by releasing two music videos, recording a debut EP to be released this summer, and performing both on and off campus. Yet despite all the work and effort she has invested in this past year, she remains genuine and humble.

“Honestly, everything is a work in process,” says James. “I know Berklee is awesome, but you only get a few years. I want to be an artist now, and I feel with social media, having a great online presence is half the battle.”

Stephanie started the process of recording her upcoming EP since summer of 2015, drawing strong influences from producer Rick Rubin. She partnered with two Berklee producers Amy Puffer and JT Gagarin, and most of the tracks were live instruments with the exception of one that was more in the box.

Her first release, “I Deserve Better” came out with a music video, featuring improvised dancing. She followed the release with her second song, “You Have Your Love,” partnering with Berklee to produce the music video.

“I reached a point where I knew how important music was and how much I felt this was my mission and destiny,” says James. “Everything is right at my fingertips, and everything is there and it’s possible. The only things that get in the way are fear and doubt, but I have people and my family to support me.”

James is definitely on the right track, and she is paving the way for herself to achieve her mission and destiny as she approaches finishing Berklee next year. “People can get jaded and tired towards the end [of Berklee], but we have to remember music is a gift. It has the power change the world more than anything. It’s groundbreaking.”

Catch Stephanie James performing around Boston this summer!

Watch “You Have Your Love” below.