Who am I?

Live Performance

James R. Newell is a folk/blues singer songwriter with a broad repertoire and many years of performing experience. Recent projects include putting together an historical tribute to the American songwriter entitled The Haunted Honky Tonk. With his partner, Mark Sorrells, James provides an entertaining survey of classic American songwriters and their songs. Check out The Haunted Honky Tonk link for audio clips and information on bookings. James has a variety of other performing interests, including a special interest in composing and performing musical adaptations of the poetry of 14th century Persian Sufi poet Hafiz of Shiraz, some of which are available on his CD The Songs of Hafiz. In addition, James has a wide repertoire of original songs and specializes in live performance of classic folk, blues and jazz music. For a performance history and biographical sketch, visit the Bio link. For information on live performances please visit the Performance link where you will find examples of set lists and information on how to contact James for bookings.

Personal Coaching

James is also a personal coach who works with creative people to help them acheive important goals. With coaching clients James works on life planning, setting and achieving meaningful goals, and balancing creative, spiritual and business concerns with a happy and healthy home life. James works with creative types (songwriters, performers, artists, and others) as well as with entrepreneurs, business people and students. As a personal coach and life coach James helps people create and work towards achieving a set of meaningful goals that are congruent with their highest values and motivations. Please visit the Coaching link for more information on personal coaching and how to get a month of free coaching. In this area you will also find many complimentary resources that you can use to develop a plan of action that will help you achieve you goals.

Music Lessons

As a part of my coaching service I also teach guitar and voice and basic songwriting skills for songwriters and performers. Please visit the Lessons link for information on guitar lessons for songwriters, or lessons on basic vocal and songwriting technique.


After spending many years as a working musician James went back to school and received an undergraduate degree in psychology from Tennessee State University. James is currently majoring in Ethnomusicology in a doctoral program at the Vanderbilt Graduate Department of Religion. James received a master’s degree in theological studies from the Vanderbilt University Divinity School in December, 2001. His focus at the Divinity school was pastoral counseling and theology. James is also involved with ongoing training in the field of personal coaching through Coach University. For more information on James’ qualifications and credentials please visit the Bio link where you will find a complete resume/curriculum vitae, a brief biographical sketch and the full text of several academic papers.