Duncan James

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This article is about English singer and member of band Blue. For the Australian singer, see Duncan James (Australian singer).
For other uses of "Duncan James", see Duncan James (disambiguation).
Duncan James
Duncan James 2011 cropped.jpg
Duncan James in 2011
Background information
Birth name Duncan Matthew James Inglis
Born (1978-04-07) 7 April 1978 (age 36)[1]
Origin Salisbury, Wiltshire, England, UK
Genres Pop rock, R&B
Occupations Singer, songwriter
Years active 2001–present
Labels Innocent (2001–2007)
Associated acts Blue, Antony Costa, Lee Ryan, Simon Webbe
Website officialduncanjames.co.uk

Duncan Matthew James Inglis (born 7 April 1978),[1] known as Duncan James, is an English singer, actor and television presenter. He is best known as a member of the boyband Blue from 2000 to 2005 and again from 2009 following their reformation.

Early life[edit]

James was born in Salisbury, Wiltshire.[1] He grew up an only child in Dorset and was raised primarily by his mother and grandparents after his father abandoned his mother before he was born.[2] He was raised a "strict Catholic"[3][4][5] and educated at Dumpton School (where his grandfather worked as a music teacher), Milldown School (Blandford Forum), Corfe Hills School (Broadstone), and Sidmouth College (East Devon). At age 15, he played Puck in A Midsummer Night's Dream. He played Dr Watson in Sherlock Holmes for Sidmouth Youth Theatre. James also worked for Haven Holidays as a Havenmate on the Isle of Wight and at West Bay in Dorset.[citation needed]

Career[edit]

2000–2005: Career with Blue[edit]

Main article: Blue (English band)
Blue performing Greatest Hits Tour, in 2005.

In early 2000, James, along with Antony Costa, convinced Lee Ryan and Simon Webbe to form the group Blue.[6] Blue's R&B-influenced pop allowed the group to achieve commercial success in the United Kingdom and many other countries, including Ireland, Portugal, Belgium, Italy, France, Australia and New Zealand. The band released their debut single "All Rise" in May 2001 and it reached No. 4 on the UK Singles Chart. Their follow up single, "Too Close", was released in August 2001 peaking at No. 1 on the UK Singles Chart. They went on to achieve a second number one in November with the ballad "If You Come Back". The album All Rise was released in time for Christmas and reached number one, eventually selling in excess of 1.8 million albums in the UK. The final single from the album, "Fly By II", reached No. 6 in March 2002.

Their second studio album, One Love was released in October 2002, entering at No. 1 on the UK Albums Chart and selling more than 150,000 copies. Three singles were released from the album: "One Love", which peaked at No. 3, "Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word", featuring vocals from Elton John, which peaked at No. 1, and "U Make Me Wanna", which peaked at #4.[7] Their third studio album, Guilty, was released in autumn 2003, entering at No. 1 on the UK Albums Chart and selling 100,000 copies on the week of release. The album spawned four singles, including "Guilty", which peaked at No. 2, "Signed, Sealed, Delivered, I'm Yours", featuring vocals from Stevie Wonder and Angie Stone, which peaked at No. 11, "Breathe Easy", which peaked at No. 4, and "Bubblin'", which peaked at No. 9.[citation needed]

Following the release of Best of Blue, includes three tracks only previously in Japan: "The Gift", "It's Alright" and "Elements". By the indication of the album booklet, a live version of "Lonely This Christmas" from CD:UK was intended to be track seven on the album, however, was removed from the tracklisting for unknown reasons. The album was released in July 2005, becoming available in several European countries, as well as Japan, Thailand[8] and China, however, was a commercial failure and failed to chart anywhere. The album was not released in the UK, despite copies being widely available.[why?][citation needed]

2006–2010: Future Past, stage and television[edit]

He returned to the solo music scene in May 2006 with his single "Sooner or Later", releasing the video in early May and planning to release the single commercially on 5 June 2006. The video reached No. 2 on The Box and No. 5 on The Hits. However, the single was no commercial success and entered the British charts at No. 35, before slipping down to No. 72 in its second week. "Can't Stop a River" was James's next single. Released on 21 August 2006, the track would only reach No. 59 in the UK and No. 97 in Ireland. In continental Europe, where "Can't Stop a River" was released the day prior to the UK, it similarly proved unpopular, dropping out of the singles charts in many countries such as France, Turkey, Germany, and Belgium. James' album also fell short, selling less than 1,000 copies in the UK in its first week (and failing to reach the Top 50). The album sold a total of 412,350 copies around the world. Although his debut album did not do as well as hoped (except in Italy, where it reached No. 2 on the chart and was certified as platinum for shipments of 80,000 copies), on 2 February 2007, music channel B4 premièred the video for "Amazed", his new single which was scheduled to be released 12 March 2007. However, there was once again a lack of interest. The release was cancelled and James was dropped from his recording contract. He has since announced he has quit his solo career. In 2007, James appeared in the West End production of Chicago.[9] He completed ten more weeks in Chicago from 10 December 2007 until 9 February 2008.[10] He appeared in an episode of The Bill called "The Morning After", which aired on 1 January 2009. It was confirmed in February 2009 that James had been selected to replace Denise Van Outen as presenter of Grease: the School Musical, the sequel to Hairspray: The School Musical. Filming commenced in early 2009. In May 2009, James announced the UK's voting in the Eurovision Song Contest. He presented Hannah-Oke on Disney Channel UK, a singing dancing contest based on the popular Disney TV series Hannah Montana. He also appeared on Celebrity Are You Smarter Than A 10 Year Old? and raised £10,000 for his charities. In 2006, James appeared with the other members of the boyband Blue on 26 June episode of Ministry of Mayhem, where James and the other band members were all hypnotised by UK stage hypnotist David Days.[11]

James has worked occasionally as a television presenter, having presented the 95.8 Capital FM's Party in the Park for the Prince's Trust (2003 and 2004), and ITV2's coverage of the TV series Soapstar Superstar, along with Jayne Middlemiss. Other presenting work includes Pop City Live, Variety Club Showbusiness Awards 2004, T4 Movie Special: Spider-Man 2, Record of the Year: Downloaded and GMTV's Entertainment Today.

He took part on ITV1's Dancing on Ice in 2007, when he made it to the grand final alongside rugby player Kyran Bracken and actress Clare Buckfield. He came third in the contest, although was unable to perform his Bolero performance. In 2007, James played himself in the pilot episode of Plus One, which was part of Channel 4's Comedy Showcase. A full series was broadcast in 2009, in which he played a broad caricature of himself called "Duncan From Blue". He made an appearance on a new show for Sky One, Guinness World Records Smashed, performing with Festival4Stars contestants.[12] It aired in November 2008.[13] In 2008, James became an Ambassador of Festival4Stars talent competition after he judge a national final.[12] James has been cast as one of the leads in the musical Legally Blonde (adapted from the film Legally Blonde) as it transferred from Broadway to London's West End in December 2009.[14] He plays opposite Sheridan Smith as Elle, and Aoife Mulholland as Brooke.[15] In December 2009, James appeared as 'Warner Huntington III' in the West End production of Legally Blonde.[16] James appeared as a celebrity guest on 14 August 2009 on Daily Cooks Challenge.[17] In 2010, James presented the quiz show Scream if You Know the Answer! where the contestants have to answer questions whilst on rollercoasters. In July 2010, he was a judge on Don't Stop Believing, a talent show for choirs. He has his own radio show on 95.8 Capital FM, every Sunday from 7–10 pm. In 2009 he briefly made an appearance on an episode of the UK reality show What Katie Did Next, about the life of model Katie Price.[citation needed]

Blue performing in Manchester on 2011.

2011–present: Return with Blue[edit]

The band represented the UK at the 2011 Eurovision Song Contest in Düsseldorf with the song "I Can" coming in 11th place with 100 points. Blue released their fourth studio album, Roulette on 25 January 2013 with "Hurt Lovers" as the lead single. On 21 February 2013, it was confirmed that the group would be joining The Big Reunion in which six groups from the past reform for a one off gig including Liberty X, Atomic Kitten and 5ive. Effective May 2013, the group will tour Great Britain and Ireland with the other groups in The Big Reunion concert series.[18] On 27 March 2013, the group announced they would embark on their first headlining tour later on in the year, their first tour in nearly ten years.

Personal life[edit]

According to an interview he gave to Gabby Logan on BBC Radio 5 Live on 28 July 2007, he is a great-grandson of Herbert Chapman, the manager of the Arsenal football team of the 1930s.[citation needed]

He has a daughter named Tianie Finn by former girlfriend Claire Grainger. He defined himself as bisexual in an interview with the News of the World on 12 July 2009,[3][4][19] though he later also identified himself sometimes as gay.[20]

Filmography[edit]

Television
Year Title Role Notes
2003 Bo' Selecta! Himself / Various role Season 2, Episode 5
2006–07 Soapstar Superstar: Extra Tracks Himself / Presenter
2007 Dancing on Ice Himself / Competitor Season 2; 3rd place
2007 DanceX Billy Flynn Season 1, Episode 4
2007 Comedy Showcase Himself "Plus One" (Season 1, Episode 3)
2009 The Bill Dan Coleman "The Morning After" (Season 25, Episode 1)
2009 Grease: the School Musical Himself / Judge
2009 Hannah-Oke Himself / Presenter
2010 Don't Stop Believing Himself / Judge
2010–11 Scream! If You Know the Answer Himself / Presenter Season 1
2012 Spy Himself / Presenter "Christmas Special: Codename - Show Stopper" (Season 2, Episode 11)
2013 Celebrity Juice Himself The Big Reunion Special (Season 9, Episode 5)

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

List of albums, with selected chart positions and certifications
Title Album details Peak chart positions
UK
[21]
GER
[22]
JAP
[23]
ITA
[24]
SWI
[25]
Future Past
  • Released: 12 June 2006
  • Label: Innocent Records
  • Format: CD, digital download
55 68 29 2 59
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that territory.

Singles[edit]

List of singles, with selected chart positions and certifications
Title Year Peak chart positions Album
UK
[21]
BEL
[26]
GER
[27]
IRE
[28]
ITA
[24]
SWI
[25]
UKN
[29]
"I Believe My Heart"
(with Keedie)
2004 2 16 67 29 13 49 13 Future Past
"Sooner or Later" 2006 35 2 3 9
"Can't Stop A River" 59 4
"Amazed" 71 3
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that territory.

Promotional singles[edit]

List of singles, with selected chart positions
Title Year Peak chart positions Album
UK
[21]
"Greatest Love of All"[30]
(featuring Rachel Stevens and Children of Fight for Life)
2008 Charity single
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that territory.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Duncan James profile at MTV
  2. ^ Lucy Siegle (26 February 2006). "What would you save if your house was burning down?". London: Observer.guardian.co.uk. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  3. ^ a b Wootton, Dan (12 July 2009). "Duncan James: I have flings with men". News of the World. Retrieved 6 July 2011. 
  4. ^ a b "'I have flings with men': Blue's legendary lothario Duncan James admits he's bisexual". Daily Mail (UK). 13 July 2009. Retrieved 4 August 2011. 
  5. ^ Writer, Staff. "Blue star Duncan James comes out as bisexual". PinkNews.co.uk. Retrieved 10 April 2012. 
  6. ^ Blue – Overview AllMusic
  7. ^ "Blue bands settle name dispute". BBC News. 30 June 2003. 
  8. ^ "4Ever Blue Thailand edition". Retrieved 28 April 2011. 
  9. ^ "Duncan James Extends Chicago Stint Three Weeks". Whatsonstage.com. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  10. ^ "Independent Talent Group Ltd Presenters". Independenttalent.com. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  11. ^ "David Days". David Days. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  12. ^ a b "Purestar Productions: Intensive Dance Training & Corporate Entertainment". Festival4stars.com. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  13. ^ "Showbiz". London: The Sun. 6 October 2008. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  14. ^ "Sheridan Smith Nabs Legally Blonde's Elle". Whatsonstage.com. 16 March 2009. 
  15. ^ "Duncan James Gets Legal with Sheridan Smith". Whatsonstage.com. 16 March 2009. 
  16. ^ "Legally Blonde - James and Smith confirmed". IndieLondon. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  17. ^ "Daily Cooks Challenge Returns - Throng". Tvthrong.co.uk. 30 June 2009. Retrieved 13 December 2012. 
  18. ^ "Blue Join Reality Show The Big Reunion". mtv.com (MTV). 22 February 2013. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  19. ^ Nunn, Gary (14 July 2009). "Duncan James's sexuality". London: Guardian. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  20. ^ "Duncan James tortured by Catholic guilt over sexuality". Retrieved 24 September 2013. 
  21. ^ a b c "The Official Charts Company - Duncan James". The Official Charts Company. 5 May 2013. 
  22. ^ "Charverfolgung Longplay" (in German). musicline.de PhonoNet. Retrieved 29 May 2011. 
  23. ^ "Japan Charts - albums, DVDs and singles". Oricon. Retrieved 2 December 2010. 
  24. ^ a b "Italian Charts". italiancharts.com Hung Medien. Retrieved 25 April 2010. 
  25. ^ a b "Swiss Charts" (in German). swisscharts.com Hung Medien. Retrieved 29 May 2011. 
  26. ^ "Belgium Charts > Lee Ryan". Ultratop - Hung Medien. Retrieved 25 April 2010. 
  27. ^ "Charverfolgung Longplay" (in German). musicline.de PhonoNet. Retrieved 29 May 2011. 
  28. ^ "Irish Charts". irish-charts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 25 April 2010. 
  29. ^ "Ukrainian Chart". FDR. 10 May 2009. Retrieved 13 July 2010. 
  30. ^ "Rachel in a new charity single with Duncan James". Rachel Stenves Official. Retrieved 22 August 2009. 

Bibliography[edit]

External links[edit]