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Ardent Music Signs Mikey James’ “Admirers”

John Hampton Co-Produces, Adam Hill Engineers at Ardent Studios

Pictured outside Ardent Studios in Memphis are Admirers's co-producer John Hampton, artist Mikey James, and recording engineer/mixer Adam Hill. Photo by Jonathan Pekar.

The Ardent Music label, based in Memphis at renowned Ardent Studios, has signed Admirers, the brainchild of conceptualist musician Mikey James. The sumptuous debut album, “Involuntary Memory,” captures the ever-prolific James at the top of his studio craft — combining shades of glam, disco, Britpop, New Jack Swing, EDM, house, post-punk and lo-fi indie rock.

James manages to thread seemingly disparate sounds together via seamless pop songwriting chops and a quirky, art-damaged approach that’s simultaneously smooth and angular, gritty and polished. He makes familiar sounds seem fresh again by putting them in unexpected settings never expected, all while his unmistakably individual approach to songwriting and pop hooks take center stage.

James first came to recognition as the drummer in the group Longwave during their peak of popularity and critical buzz, from late 2001 to early 2004, when the band was often associated with the Strokes because both bands shared a manager and toured together just as a buzz started to percolate. James was asked to join Longwave by bandleader and friend since high school Steve Schiltz.

Prior to joining Longwave, James had amassed a large body of his own distinctive material. Always highly active as a daring home recordist, he continues to be so today. James has led and fronted several solo-driven acts before and after Longwave, including The Mercies and Mikey Jukebox – both of which have charted on indie charts and had songs featured on hit TV shows, including “Gossip Girl,” “New Girl,” “Ben & Kate,” “Traffic Light,” “The Lying Game,” and the film “The Secret Life of Dorks.”

For “Involuntary Memory,” James recorded with co-producer John Hampton (Replacements, Cramps, Gin Blossoms, White Stripes) and ace recording engineer Adam Hill (White Stripes, Raconteurs, Big Star, Don Nix) at the legendary Ardent Studios in Memphis. The result is an experience that takes the listener back in time and moves forward, like a haunting reminiscence that forms on the spot.

To hear “Spirit Lamp,” first single off the debut Admirers album, “Involuntary Memory,” visit:

For information about Ardent Studios, visit: