James Eversole was born in Kentucky in 1929 and graduated from the University of Kentucky in 1951 where he studied composition with Frank Prindl and trombone with William Worrel. He took his masters degtree from the old Cincinnati Conservatory of Music in 1954 and there he studied composition with Scott Huston and Charles Hamm and trombone with Ernest Glover.
He was director of Bands at the University of Montana from 1955 to 1963 where he also taught trombone and low brasses. He then took his doctorate at Columbia University where he studied composition with Ralph Wilkerson, and upon completion of his degree, joined the faculty at the University of Connecticut where he taught composition and music literature. He retired from the university in 1989 and moved back to Missoula, Montana, where he resides with his wife, organist Mary Ellen Eversole.
He is a playing member of the Western Tuba Ensemble, the Missoula Community Concert Band, and performs regularly as a church musician. For several years he played in the Montana Trombone Chorale and wrote extensively for the group. He retired from the chorale in 2006.
His compositions include two operas, over 40 songs, two brass quintets, numerous band works, chamber pieces, choral works, and organ compositions. He is a National Endowment for the Arts Fellow, and for many years was in the American Association of University Composers and Connecticut Composers Incorporated. Recent compositions, in addition to the trombone literature, include Ishtar: Music of the Realm, commissioned by the Tampa Bay Symphony; Psyche: Songs of Love and Time for baritone and wind ensemble (poems by Conrad Aiken); and Out of the Almanack for men's chorus, four horns, and piano (poems by Benjamin Franklin) for Missoula's well known Mendelssohn Club. Psallite, Psallite, Songs of Praise is for chorus, brass ensemble, percussion, and piano. He has composed two song cycles, Voices from Beyond (poetry by Edgar Lee Masters) for Tenor and Piano, and Parts of the Whole (poetry by Lorraine Andrie) for soprano, violin, and piano.
He is a member of Kiwanis International and has served as an officer both locally and internationally.