It’s that time of year when we can relax and indulge in some warm and wonderful seasonal music. If you’re looking for something new this year for your xmas playlist, you’d be wise to check out critically-acclaimed singer Michael Tinholme’s latest offering; “It’s Christmas Time in the City” – a classic collection of seasonal favourites in a smooth, jazzy flavour.
A highly-gifted musician and singer, Michael has overcome severe adversities to get where he is today. Adopted into a military family when he was only seven months old, Michael suffered years of abuse from his mentally ill mother. Constantly on the move, music became Michael’s only release. Despite his difficult home-life, Michael played his first professional gig aged just twelve, and learned to love expressing his creativity. With his adopted father stationed in Vietnam, Michael experienced months of foster care before leaving the family home and spending six years living on the streets of California.
It’s incredible, then, that Michael, ever the optimist, turned this around, with no little help from legendary pianist and long-time David Bowie collaborator, Mike Garson, who recognised in Michael a great talent. Which brings us to “It’s Christmas Time in the City,” which is as likeable a collection of Christmas songs as you could wish for.
Lead single, “Silver Bells” rolls out with sophistication and style. Tinholme’s voice is a velvety delight, full of pathos and emotion. This special release offers two original numbers, plus a generous ten tracks of beautifully-interpreted evergreen hits, including John Lennon’s “Happy Christmas (War Is Over),” “Moonlight In Vermont” and “I’ll Be Home For Christmas.”
Through it all, Michael and his band keep up an impressive level of performance. These are lush, wonderfully-produced songs with a tight and top-class jazz-band. You wouldn’t expect anything less from Michael, and the assembled players here are of the highest calibre. Bruce Fowler (former collaborator with Captain Beefheart, Frank Zappa) lends his considerable talents on trombone. The great jazz guitarist, Mike Miller (Bette Midler, Quincy Jones, Brand X, Chick Corea) also features, as do renowned pianist, Bill Cunliffe (who can cite working with Frank Sinatra and Buddy Rich on his CV) and celebrated drummer, Gary Novak (Chick Corea, Natalie Cole).
That’s an impressive line-up, by any standards. It’s credit to Michael’s standing within the music community that so many amazing talents are backing him up here, and the results are spell-binding. “It’s Christmas Time in the City”is not your ordinary Christmas album!
Follow Michael down below!