MacDonough was part of Iced Earth’s line up from 1996–2000 and again from 2001–2004. With Iced Earth he recorded: 3 full length albums, an EP, a live album, and a single. In late 2004, he was recruited into Megadeth. James toured with Dave Mustaine and the band for almost 2 years, appearing with Megadeth on the first ever Gigantour festival, the brainchild of Mustaine. He appears in Megadeth’s music video for the song “Of Mice and Men”, the Arsenal of Megadeth DVD, and (in cartoon form) the band’s cameo in an episode of Duck Dodgers. He never recorded a studio album with Megadeth.
On February 10, 2006 James posted a message on the Megadeth forums saying he was parting ways with Megadeth. The forum post MacDonough made was entitled “Hello Droogs” and contained the following:
|“||I just wanted to say thank you all so much for making me feel so welcome and thank you for all the awesome memories along the road. I will not be playing with Megadeth any longer. I’m sure Dave will post about it soon. Thanks again my Metal brothers and sisters, James.||„|
The next day Megadeth frontman Dave Mustaine posted in the forums saying he had nothing bad to say about James and that he hopes they remain friends.
On April 25, 2006, Blabbermouth.net reported that James would fill in for Nevermore bass player Jim Sheppard as he underwent treatment for Crohn’s Disease. James is a long-time fan and friend of the band (on his Megadeth.com bio, he stated Nevermore’s Enemies of Reality as one of his favorite albums) and performed with them on their tour with In Flames in the mid part of 2006.
It was then announced on July 25 that James would fill in for Strapping Young Lad bassist, Byron Stroud on the end of the Ozzfest tour, as Byron had to return to Fear Factory for European festival dates.
- Iced Earth 1996–2000, 2001–2004
- Megadeth 2004–2006
- Days of Purgatory – 1997
- Something Wicked This Way Comes – 1998
- The Melancholy E.P. (Limited Edition) – 1999
- Alive in Athens – 1999
- The Melancholy E.P. – 2001
- Dark Genesis – 2001
- Tribute to the Gods – 2002
- The Reckoning – 2003
- The Glorious Burden – 2004
- Arsenal of Megadeth (DVD) – 2006
- Gigantour (CD & DVD) – 2006
- That One Night: Live in Buenos Aires (CD & DVD) – 2007