Ro James (BMI)

Abe Olman Scholarship, 2013

Ronnie James is one to watch. Known by close friends as “Ro James”, he began his love affair with music as a young child in the pews of his father’s church. It was there he was surrounded by music that meant as much to hear as to sing and quickly developed a connection with melodies that have since refused to go unnoticed. Despite comparisons to legends like Donny Hathaway and Jodeci, Ronnie has a style to call his own. His single, “Pledge Allegiance,” has won over fans of all genres because of his ability to convey a strong message of commitment without sounding preachy. This is a testament to his authenticity as a writer that cares about his community without sacrificing his “cool.”

Aside from his music, Ronnie is extremely passionate about mentoring kids in his community. He understands the importance of education and hopes to inspire the next generation of singers and songwriters through sharing his talents. When asked what separates him from the next talented male artist, Ronnie confidently replies: “I feel that it is my duty to re-acquaint the world with music and what its mission is. Music is made to teach, to heal and to provide hope. I don’t feel the need to compete because I’m confident in my talent and there’s room for everyone to share their gift. Music is not a gimmick and it is not a trend. Neither am I. I just want to leave my mark and I don’t want to be someone who simply lived and died; I want people to know I was here.” Aside from writing for his own projects, Ronnie is a featured writer on artists projects including, “Use Me” from Miguel’s latest album, Kaleidoscope Dream.