James Banner was born in Dudley, England in 1991. He has studied in Birmingham, Paris and Berlin, and is now based between Berlin and the UK, working around Europe as a musician, educator and composer. In the UK he is composer in residence for Make The Paint Dance, workshop leader for Jazzlines (Town Hall Symphony Hall Birmingham), as well as double bass tutor at Leeds College of Music junior school. His debut album as bandleader will be released on 18.10.2018 by the Cologne-based label JazzHausMusik, followed by a tour of Germany in March-April 2019. As a composer he received a studio award from the Berlin Senate Department of Culture and Europe and the Elsa Neumann Stipendium 2018 from the Berlin University of the Arts/Hanns Eisler, which supports the ambitious choral/improvising ensemble project Voices of Berlin.
He is active as a co-leader and sideman in projects including the Birgitta Flick Quartet, The Good Old Good Ones, Mark Pringle, Double Double Bass (with Greg Cohen) and the trio Elias Stemeseder/James Banner/Ugo Alunni, as well as numerous other international collaborative projects. He also co-curates a monthly residency alongside pianist Declan Forde named Practically Married at Berlin’s Donau115, voted one of Europe’s best jazz clubs by The Guardian.