James was born in Plano, Texas but grew up in nearby Cool, Texas. He started playing guitar at age 13 and has played in various country and blues bands since he was 21. One of James's musical influences is blues guitarist Doyle Bramhall II.
Before Idol, James was playing with his own band, The Casey James Band, when he decided to try out for the show.
James tried out for the show and attracted a lot of attention because of his looks especially when guest judge Victoria Beckham asked him to wear his hair down and judge Kara DioGuardi suggested he take his shirt off, which he did. James did manage to impress the judges with his version of "Slow Dancing in A Burning Room". He went on to Hollywood and then the live shows where he showcased his guitar skills as well as his voice on songs like "Heaven" by Bryan Adams and "Jealous Guy" by John Lennon.
James finished in 3rd place on May 19, 2010.
James took part in the American Idols Live tour, opened for the popular country duo Sugarland on their Incredible Machine tour, and signed a record deal with BNA Records. His self-titled debut album, which James co-wrote 9 of the album's 11 tracks, was released on March 20, 2012. The album features the hit singles "Let's Don't Call It A Night", which earned him an American Country Award nomination, and "Crying on a Suitcase" and has so far sold 77,000 copies to date.
James even took time off from his busy touring schedule to return to Idol on April 4, 2013.
When BNA Records went out of business in 2012, James switched over to Columbia Nashville, another label within Sony Nashville. His second album, which he's been working on in while he's been on the road, will be released by Columbia Nashville.
- Casey James (2012)
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