James Galway (born December 8, 1939) is an Northern Ireland-born flute player from Belfast, often called The Man With the Golden Flute. He became one of the first flautists to establish a career as a soloist. Queen Elizabeth II knighted him in June 2001.
He auditioned for the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra under Herbert von Karajan, and was principal flute of that orchestra from 1969 to 1975. To Karajan's surprise and dismay, after a period of some disagreement, "Jimmy" Galway decided that he would leave to pursue a solo career, which he succeeded in doing admirably. He still performs regularly and is one of the world's leading classical flute players.
He is Principal Guest Conductor of the London Mozart Players, based at the Fairfield Halls, Croydon, South London.
Most recently, Sir James has performed for the Academy Award-winning ensemble recording the soundtracks of Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings film trilogy.
He now resides in Meggen, Switzerland, with his U.S.-born wife, Jeanne.