James Wilson is the Head Instructor of Black Star Eskrima. As a first-generation Filipino American, he was exposed to Filipino Martial Arts through his Father. He received his Lakan Isa (first Degree) in 1995, in Doce Pares Eskrima. The late Supreme Grandmaster Cacoy Canete attended his first Black Belt test. James subsequently received his Lakan Dalawa (second degree in 1997).
Through countless hours of the "backroom" sessions at the Patalinghug's school and fighting with other schools, James and fellow senior students refined their techniques by fighting with little padding and few rules. Many people helped him along this path, but two friends, Jon Moury, and Woodrow Little should be mentioned specifically for their contribution to his development as a martial artist.
In 1999 James moved to New Orleans with his wife. In 2001 he started training in Minami Ryu Ju Jitsu. He also began teaching Eskrima semi-privately at Garrett Sensei's dojo on Veteran's Memorial Blvd in Metairie. He continued to do so until Hurricane Katrina destroyed it in 2005. After the Storm, he briefly trained again in Minami-Ryu Ju Jitsu with Garrett Sensei and also began teaching Eskrima in Kenner. In the spring of 2007, he moved to the Temple Gym in Uptown, New Orleans.
During his constant search for more efficient and logical ways of doing things, James started training with Michael Janich, the founder of Martial Blade Concepts. While not specifically or exclusively a Filipino Martial Art, it is very heavily influenced by the FMAs and Indonesian Martial Arts. In November 2016, Mr. Janich recognized James as an Affiliate Instructor in MBC. James continues to actively train with Mr. Janich.