James Waterston






James' musical aspirations are evident in internet articles and interviews. It seems he played piano at a local inn when the family summered in Mattapoisett, and I recall Sam being proud of his son's talent, suggesting his style of music was unique and would probably evolve into something someday. James made a rather daring move (not unlike his character, Edmund, who had adventures as a merchant marine?), when he left his Malaparte buddies, went to New Orleans, and introduced himself to one of the experts in Dixieland jazz for instruction.
Photo courtesy Anne Mikusinski



In an interview with Parade magazine,James Waterston said he has an interesting relationship to his music. He has played piano "on and off" since he was quite young. During the Christy chat, he said that he thought hard about persuing only music as his career. He had reached a "certain level" in his acting career when he decided to make the move to New Orleans and see if music was his calling.

He decided to go to The Big Easy and study since he was interested not only in rock and roll but also traditional Dixieland, r&b, and stride. He studied with Preservation Hall great James Royar and Tom McDermott of the Dukes of Dixieland. He was able to play, informally, at places such as Preservation Hall and the Maple Leaf.

Although he was blissfully happy, James realized that his skill level was not as great as his love of music. So he returned to acting. And he admits that the piano is not a portable instrument, which is a distinct disadvantage when an acting assignment takes him away from home. During the last year, his time at the keyboard has been limited, and he admits he approaches his music in "fits and starts". But it looks like music will always be a part of his life.

In a tribute to his music, he will soon be offering a CD at his website. Fans are looking forward to hearing James play!