The Artist Spotlight with Coby James
By: Rhema 99.7
Coby James is a relatively new artist, making a huge impact. Coby chats about the story behind his song, Pressure, his cover songs and his little sister.
Let’s talk about your back story, where it all began for you, because you were pretty young, weren’t you? I think seven when you first started writing music?
I wrote my first song when I was seven years old and I kind of wrote songs throughout life every now and then. But when I turned 15, a girl broke my heart and I wanted to start writing music. So I started writing some cheesy pop songs that weren’t good by any means. Then my dad and I were in the car one day, he was taking me to class and he was like, ‘hey, you know, there’s no one in Christian music doing anything that sounds like you’. He’s like ‘how cool to dedicate what you do to the Lord and do that for Him.’ And I was like, man, that is a really cool idea. So I really started with it and there was no pressure of forcing there. I decided to go home and write my first Christian song and I did. From then on, I was hooked and that was what I wanted to do. I found a love for that. I got better at guitar and from 15 on I started making music.
Talk to us today about the song Pressure and your heart behind it.
Yeah, absolutely. Pressure was a song that I wrote my first week ever coming to Nashville at the age of, I think seventeen. I think it was the last session of the week, I wrote it with a guy who then became one of the biggest friends in my life, David Spencer. But I met with him and I came in with this idea and I was like, ‘hey, this is like something that I’ve really been dealing with’, because coming to Nashville, it was a lot of stress getting in these rooms that these producers and these writers that have had so many cuts and done so many things in the industry. I was just a little overwhelmed and scared. I felt like I really wanted to prove myself to all these A&R’s and to my manager, to all these people. I wanted to prove to them that I could do this. So that song really came from a spot in my career where I was trying to show people like, ‘yeah, I can do this, I was born to do this’. I wrote that song ‘Pressure’ that day with now, a lifelong friend. It’s become a song that I’ve grown to love very, very much, and I’m glad that other people have to.
I love the fact that you’ve got a whole bunch of covers from other artists on your YouTube channel. You do For King and Country content. Dixon’s new one ‘The Devil is a Liar’. You also do Justin Bieber’s song ‘Holy’. Do you enjoy doing those videos, taking a song that’s out there and going, ‘hey, look, I’m just going to give it my own flavour’.
Yes, I’ve enjoyed that so, so much. I’ve just got into a pattern of doing them every Thursday. I have a new cover come out on my Instagram reels and every month I have one full cover come out on YouTube. I’ve enjoyed it so much and the reception has been great. People seem to really enjoy that and I have a great time doing it. It’s always really fun to take some of my favourite songs and throw them out there, take them for a little bit of a spin and see what happens. It’s been such a blessing to get to do that.
And am I right? I think it’s definitely Zahlia. Does your sister appear with you?
She does! She was in a lot of my older songs before I moved to Nashville because because I lived with her at the time. But every time I get with her, I always try to get something on the books with her and sing something down. But she has got a crazy voice. She is a freak and she is so talented! I hope that one day I get to make music for her and she can do it too.
Article supplied with thanks to Rhema 99.7.
Feature image: cobyjames.com