Canadian singer, songwriter, music producer and ex- JAMES multi-instrumentalist Michael Kulas is no stranger to the spotlight. Although part of many independent Toronto music projects in the late 1980s and early 1990s, it was around the Summer of 1995 that his professional career began to take off. Having been granted the FACTOR New Talent Demo Award for music as well as coming runner up in the Q107 - Scott Liddle Songwriters Award Contest that year, Kulas also released his first solo studio album titled Mosquito. Produced by Saul Davies, multi-instrumentalist with the British rock band James, it went on to be hailed as one of Canada's "top 20 independent albums" of 1995/1996 by Chart magazine. The album would also gain the attention of James front man Tim Booth who midway through 1996 and at the behest of producer Brian Eno was considering filling the vocal void created when guitarist and backing vocalist Larry Gott departed in 1995.
In January 1997 Kulas was invited by James to New York as a backing vocalist and multi-instrumentalist to test the waters with a handful of American shows and an appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman. The ad-hoc "audition" would prove to be a success and garner an invitation for Kulas to join the band in the UK for what would turn out to be a five-year period.
Performing with James, Kulas was a singer and multi-instrumentalist on 4 Top 40 albums including Whiplash, the number one The Best Of, Millionaires and Pleased To Meet You. In that time he and the band toured extensively in Asia, South Africa, Europe and North America, including the Lollapalooza Festival and Glastonbury Festival in 1997. In the UK, James continued to perform sold out Arena Tours including Wembley and Manchester Evening News Arena and also played to a live TV audience of 500 million as the torch was passed from Kuala Lumpur to Manchester for the 2002 Commonwealth Games. After a decision by singer Booth to leave James to pursue other interests in December 2001 saw the band informally break up, Kulas returned home to Canada to pick up where he left his solo career years before.
In 2002 he completed his second, self produced solo album titled Another Small Machine while performing many live shows across Canada. In keeping with his passion for film, Kulas also went on to compose and perform music for the film Jade Love which won the 2004 Best Short Documentary at the Reel Film Festival in Toronto as well as composing original music for the Park Bench feature film The Death Of Alice Blue in 2006. His composing skills have also seen him cross over to writing music for television. In that same year Kulas wrote and produced the theme song for the Marathon animated series Team Galaxy on The Cartoon Network as well as producing full-length albums for artists The Fires Of, Keenan, Katie Griffin and Stephanie Belding. His first EP titled Imperial Cheerleader was released in December 2006 exclusively through Apple iTunes.
Although James went on to re-form with their original band line-up from the album Seven in 2007, Michael reunited with them on stage in September of 2008 at the Phoenix Concert Hall on their tour stop in Toronto.
In 2004, Kulas embarked on an entirely new venture and founded Interloper Music, a company devoted to writing music for television and film. Since its inception, Michael has written music for several high-profile companies such as BlackBerry, Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, CIBC, Rogers, Toyota and Leaf Nation as well as theme songs for the television shows Positive Living and Departures. In 2009, he was commissioned to compose the music for both the Royal Bank of Canada and the Ontario Tourism Olympic campaigns. In 2011, Kulas composed the original musical score for the feature film Fallen Before Falling, the Best Canadian Feature Film winner at the Canadian International Film Festival. In 2013 he wrote the musical score for the film Howard which went on to win the Best Canadian Short Award at the Vancouver Asian Film Festival as well as writing the song This Is My Ontario for Ontario Tourism's TV, radio and internet campaign.
After plans to write and record a side project with a few James members and Grammy Award-winning producer Malcolm Burn were put on the back burner, fate and inspiration intervened, propelling Michael to write and record his new EP "Black Box Palace" with Chris Sytnyk (Bassist from MADE), Derek James (drummer from WHY) and Ryan Jenkins on lead guitar.