2000: Far From Home
James bring in the new millennium by becoming one of the first western bands to play in China by headlining the Heineken Festival in Beijing (band day trips include The Forbidden City and The Great Wall).
The UK theatre tour that follows gives the band a chance to unveil 12 new songs which will become the basis of the album ‘Pleased To Meet You’.
The Smashing Pumpkins invite James to play at the Centurian Supersport Park in Pretoria South Africa, the band’s first foray across the equator.
2001: Death Of The International Play-Boys
Jacque Villeneuve invites James to play at his charity ski event at Villars near Geneva. The gig is outside on top of a mountain, its bloody freezing and several band members need medical assistance as they suffer the onset of hypothermia. ‘Pleased To Meet You’ is released by a now dysfunctional Mercury Records who are in the process of restructuring and heavy lay offs of staff, the album charts at a lowly 11, so lets blame the record company shall we? All is not lost though, as ‘PTMY’ makes a big impact on the Iberian Peninsula whilst struggling in the UK, as a result the lads headline Spain’s Benacassim Festival. This album makes more inroads into uncharted territories than any other in James’s history. James’s now legendary status sees them headline the Electron Festival in Greece, the lads unanimously agree its one of their best gigs ever and Dave sees a tortoise in the car park. Shortly after this Tim announces, through the band website, that he intends to leave the band after the December tour, oh calamity! The tour includes guest appearances from previous collaborators Larry Gott, Andy Diagram and Brian Eno who are drafted in for moral and musical support. The Manchester Arena show is recorded for posterity, it’s entitled ‘Getting away with it Live’ and gets released the following year. After the gig Jim asks Larry if he fancyies jamming sometime soon.
2002: The Long Lunch Break
The lads go off in separate directions to have families, tend allotments and generally try to cope with the real world.
Larry takes up Jim’s offer of a jam on numerous occasions.