Honing his craft from a young age is paying off for James Barrett. Barrett, 18, was recently crowned prom king at Abington Heights high school senior prom and he is approaching a milestone of another kind.
Following the Spotify success of his first full length album “One More,” the Clarks Summit native is set to record with Nik Bruzzese of Man Overboard and Ace Enders of The Early November at the duo’s newly opened studio, The Lumberyard in Hammonton, New Jersey.
Barrett, who has performed since he was 12, released music with four-piece Emberá in August and quickly followed up with his solo LP in March, which has received nearly 2,500 listens on Spotify by the end of May.
“I promoted the album a lot, but I was overwhelmed by the response and support I’ve gotten,” Barrett said.
One of those listeners was Bruzzese whose proven pop punk group is on hiatus and who is developing other artists along with equally successful, Enders. Bruzzese reached out to Barrett on Facebook to ask if they could work together.
“I’m not sure how he found me,” Barrett said. “He must have been really looking one day.”
Bruzzese said he and Enders, longtime friends, talked about joining forces for a while and finally made it happen with The Lumberyard.
“Working together is a new endeavor for us, and we see big things in the future,” Bruzzese said. “We feel like we could make some great records together and help guide bands in the right direction when starting off.”
Bruzzese said he wants The Lumberyard to become a household name when talking about great sounding records, production and growing bands from the ground up.
“That’s where James comes in,” Bruzzese said. “We feel that James has strong potential, musically, to make a mark in music, and we want to help him along that journey if we can. We are excited for James and others to be part of this grassroots movement we are trying to create to give bands the opportunity to grow the right way and make our own Lumberyard family of great musicians.”
Barrett, who saw Man Overboard at Warped Tour in 2013, said he jumped at the chance to work with the seasoned musicians.
“I immediately said yes,” Barrett said.
The singer/songwriter/guitar player is scheduled for two 10-hour recording sessions at The Lumberyard on July 9 and 10. He’s taking fellow Abington graduates Terry Hurst Jr. who co-wrote the title track on “One More” and Emberá lead guitarist David Sorokanich for their input.
“He’s one of the best guitar players I’ve ever met,” Barrett said of Sorokanich.
Barrett records a three song EP when he hits the studio with Bruzzese and Enders, and he is excited for the opportunity.
“Obviously they’ve had tremendous success,” Barrett said. “They’re both doing something right. It’s going to be awesome to hear their ideas. It’s going to be great to work in the same environment as them.”
Reach Matt Mattei at 570-991-6651 or Twitter @TLArts