Sort of a more rakish, English version of young American pop singers like Jason Mraz, Justin Timberlake, and Gavin DeGraw, East London roustabout Tyler James made a name for himself since debuting with the buoyant, R&B-flavored single "Why Do I Do?" in 2004. His journey actually started in 2001, but record company monkey business prevented James from getting his shot until a 2004 deal with Island Records and the infectious "Why Do I Do?" A few more singles followed, including "Just Around the Corner," "Nothing," and a cover of White Town's clever 1997 hit "Your Woman." Continuously pushed back, James' Unlikely Lad album was released digitally in 2005, subsequently failing to make a dent in the UK charts. Dropped from Island Records, James career stalled.
The sudden death of long-time friend Amy Winehouse in 2011 -- who James had met when they had trained together at the prestigious Sylvia Young Theatre School when they were teenagers -- spurred James back into action. Auditioning for the BBC TV show The Voice UK, James was picked by mentor will.i.am to join his team, eventually going on to come third overall. In July 2012 it was announced that James had re-signed with his former label Island Records, his second album, A Place I Go, produced and written in collaboration with Guy Chambers and will.i.am, was released in the October. ~ Johnny Loftus & Richard Wilson, Rovi