James Howard

Meet the Makers
If what they say is true—that everything is bigger in Texas—then y’all better get ready for one heavy-duty show that James is fixin’ to share.

James Howard
San Antonio, Texas

James’s Story
As a little kid growing up in New England, James’s family would vacation in South Carolina and smuggle back fireworks since they were illegal in his neck of the woods. Once his family relocated to Texas where they were legal, he was deemed the dude who loved to shoot up the sky.

He really got hooked by the fireworks high in 2005, later joining the Pyrotechnic Artists of Texas (aka Fire Ants), and his passion escalated from there. He began to build and upgrade his own gear so that, by 2009, he confessed his hobby was a “there goes my wallet” experience, but thankfully “I have a very understanding spouse who doesn’t care what it costs.”

A day job in IT, James’s nighttime amusement consists of creating fireworks shows for private events and small municipalities outside of his neighborhood.

James’s Favorite Fireworks Childhood Memory
James was handed a punk—a super slow stick that glows like a non-smokable cigarette—and the rest is history. At 11 years old, he remembers one winter lighting a three-pack of jumping jacks in 10 degrees weather on his grandma’s driveway and said “please tell me you have more of these things. It definitely scared my parents at the time.”

James’s Pyromusical Music Selection
While he hasn’t settled on the specifics, James leans into songs without lyrics to avoid cutting them up to make the sights and sounds flow. He goes against the norm, selecting music that is heavier and needs more fireworks cues (think the upper end of hard rock all the way into heavy metal.)

James’s Best Sky Wars Memory
When James saw his first show in 2009, he “walked up, said ‘hi, I’m new’, and what can I do? They gave me a ton of stuff and basically said ‘go make it happen.’ I didn’t think about it. I just did it.” His part in that show: handling the Girandolas, also known as flying saucers or UFOs. A big task for a first-time pyro lover indeed!

James’s Three Words That Describe His 2021 Show
Adventurous, insanity, and piratey (a word he made up to go with some of his music picks.)

The Emotion James Wants His Sky Wars Fans To Feel After Watching His Show
“’So that’s what they do in Texas’ on top of, hopefully, ‘WOW!’”

Here is a taste of what James served up on New Year’s Eve this past year: