Local Music

Setting the Bar High

Young talents emerge from East Providence


It’s always nice to learn of new, fresh talent in the area; this month a young up-and-coming musical talent from East Providence is about to blossom more fully. James Collington, along with his singing partner Jess Shoe, form the band Collington. On Saturday, April 7, the duo will be at Riverside’s Providence Coffee Roasters to release their first full-length CD, Feet on the Ground.

Twenty one-year-old Collington is the lead singer and songwriter for the band and says he has performed as an entertainer for about two years. However, the East Providence native actually started performing at the age of 16 at his church.

On his early beginnings, Collington says, “In 2009, I started writing my own songs between semesters at college. I was pretty frustrated with life and where I wanted to be.” Wanting to play drums in a band, but not finding anyone consistent to perform with, Collington took matters in his own hands and started recording songs on his computer. “Then a guy named Zac Lenz, who is now a friend, offered to record me,” he says. “From there, shows were booked and it’s kind of snowballed.” The current full-length CD, Collington says, “was recorded in my bedroom with few hundred dollars’ worth of borrowed studio equipment.”

Collington and Shoe have been performing together for five years. Collington sings lead, plays the guitar (and when performing live) also plays the kick drum. Shoe sings backup, plays the piano and serves as a sounding board for Collington’s music. He explains, “It’s interesting. Sometimes I hear the potential in the songs and she may not like them, or a part of them. Getting an eh or a thumbs down usually pushes me to try harder. But, for the most part, if I like something I stick with it.” Many of his songs are inspired by the tribulations of life and by his faith; he is often asked to perform at churches. However, he prefers to play at bars and clubs so as to reach a wider audience.

Judging from the samples of music on the band’s Facebook page, the band is bound to do well. The sound is a blend of acoustic folk and soft rock. Collington’s voice is smooth and clear, and Shoe blends well in the background. The music and easily understood lyrics should appeal to both young and old alike. Currently, the band’s Facebook page has close to 670 fans.

In addition to the CD, there is also a music video in the works; it will be produced by CC Productions with the help of another East Providence native, Chris Costa. The CD cover artwork is by Lauren Olsen, a senior at Barrington High School. This is definitely a homegrown project featuring lots of local talent in many arenas.

Collington says, “It’s been a cool journey - definitely frustrating at times - but I do consider myself really blessed to have made it as far as we have.”

For more information about Collington and their new CD Feet on the Ground or to hear a sampling of their music, visit the band’s Facebook page. To order tickets for the CD release party or to purchase a CD, visit www.collington.bigcartel.com.