James Marfleet was Born in 1971 in Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada. His Father Barry Marfleet, a Doctor of Medicine, started a practice in Nanaimo but then moved the family to Orange County, in Southern California in 1972. His mother Monique, a great inspiration to his work, is from Quebec. Both his sisters played piano for years, and became very skilled, so he was always surrounded by piano music in the household.
James took piano lessons as a young child of 8, but when he wouldn't practice regularly, his teacher recommended he stop so "he wouldn't hate it". In his words, "I always loved the piano, but there are different styles of learning, for technicians, and artists. Playing songs about a choo choo, just to learn technique was just too tedious and mundane. I'm sure some level of impatience and ADD was an issue too. I wanted to learn beautiful music that moved me. I wish my early teacher would have been more flexible, and geared toward the creative student and not just the technician." So it would be years until he would play again, thinking that traditional music education was the only way to proceed.
When he was 18, he began toying with composition by ear on the family piano, and found this to be both enjoyable and fulfilling. He took some lessons again for a few months, thinking this could help, and learned some basic theory, but soon found the demands of time and resources conflicted with composing and developing his own style. His philosophy is that "Written music is simply documenting on paper what has already been conceived and accomplished in the heart and mind, so while it is wonderful to have written, the art of music is very deeply emotional, and is not a tangible thing. While you can capture the technical language, it is difficult to document emotion." Since then he has composed and performed his own compositions on the piano, and has also learned the guitar by ear as well. He has composed for advertising and other media, but decided he would like to release some compositions in album format. He loves Chopin, Beethoven, and so many of the classical great composers, but doesn't define his music as conforming to any one genre, such as "New Age" or “Contemporary”, but likes to simply write what sounds good and evokes feeling and deep reflection. At least he hopes it does. He also writes lyrics, and sings, but that is a story for another time.
In 2015 he self-released "Sonic Imagery", his first album, which is a compilation of some songs he had composed for use in other media. Each song on the album with the exception of the title track, was composed originally to be used in soundtracks to create a mood, or accent a scene emotionally. These songs were created rapidly and some are mostly improvisational including the title track. He is now working on another album, this time purely as a standalone work, just for listening.