Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas, Mr. McAlmont

There has been a serious dearth of original Christmas songs making their way to market in the last few years. However, this year has seen numerous, high quality, festive offerings being released for the holidays, making it the jolliest season in recent memory.

Whether it's Hurts, Saint Etienne, Coldplay, Bananarama, Owl City and George Michael with newly penned tunes or Annie Lennox's beautiful longplayer of traditional carols, this Christmas is well packed with favorites for slinging garland around your tree.

With that said, David McAlmont, one of the world's finest vocalists, has contributed his entry to the ever expanding cadre of cracking Christmas songs.

"Merry Christmas Is You", a brand new song written with his current collaborator, master pianist Guy Davies, is tender and touchin. It is guaranteed to give you goosebumps and bring a tear to your eye. It's the ultimate, emotive double whammy. And David, as always, knocks it out of the park with his soaring, majestic voice.

In these glorious days of tweets and blogs, David has been one of the insightful few that has kicked down the fourth wall. He has allowed the world to have a glimpse into the inner workings of his creative process by giving his devoted followers a behind the scenes look at the making of "Merry Christmas Is You" across various social media platforms. The entire development unfolded right before the eyes of his dedicated fanbase.

David even lensed a video for his new Crimbo creation across the frozen tundra of Southwark Park in the very heart and hearth of London after last week's particularly heavy snowfall.

For those of you not familiar with David McAlmont, prepare yourself to be mesmerized by the beauty of his magnificent voice.

Egads! Apparently, pastels are back in fashion this winter. David would know. He has become one of the most fashionable popstars in Britain, following onward through an incredible lineage of suave and sophisticated singers. It's a rarefied group of smartly styled individuals which includes Bryan Ferry, David Bowie and Duran Duran. Make no mistake, David McAlmont is fashion forward and has seriously good taste in tailoring.

By the way, if you swing over to David's official website, you will receive "Merry Christmas Is You" as a free download simply by registering your name and information. We love it when pop glitterati give special audio baubles to their fans.

Recently, I had the tremendous pleasure of seeing David perform one of his very first shows on American soil. At the beginning of November, during a whirlwind trip to New York City, David enraptured a small group of attendees at Rockwood Music Hall, a new venue on the Lower East Side of Manhattan.

He performed several songs from across his entire career including a few tracks he originally recorded as part of the duo, McAlmont And Butler. Two of the highlights were "Yes", a #8 hit in the UK back in 1995, and "Falling", which peaked at #23 in the UK singles chart in 2002.

Here's David's stripped down performance of "Falling" with nothing more than Guy Davies' rollicking piano accompaniment.


I first fell head over heels for David's voice in 1993 when I happened across the CD single of "Unworthy" by Thieves, his short lived, collaborative effort with Saul Freeman. Saul went on to produce a couple of albums as a member of trip hop collective, Mandalay.

Back then, during my tenure at EMI, I was in London for business and heard the song floating out of the sound system at HMV on Oxford Street. Immediately, I asked one of the sales staff about it and he directed me toward the bountiful singles section. "Unworthy" was mine for a snip!

I cherished "Unworthy" for a few years until I stumbled across David's self-titled, debut elpee at Rebel Rebel, my favorite record shop in NYC. Since then, I've collected everything David has graced with his vocal presence.

"Unworthy" is like a cross between Annie Lennox and "Heaven And Las Vegas" era Cocteau Twins. I simply cannot say enough amazing things about David. He's truly a gifted showman and singer. Do yourself a favor and get your hands on his back catalog. Oh, dear. That sounded a bit saucy!

Merry Christmas to you, kittens! Thanks for a splendid year.


  1. What a beautiful song "My Christmas Is You" is. It's enough to make one think that love is the warmest place on earth.

    I've long thought that "Unworthy" is one of the best pop songs of the last forty years, but seeing that Sophie Muller video for the first time makes me think that it's the single best pop song ever.

  2. @esque - Isn't it, tough? The way he signs it draws the listening right into the middle of it. It's possibly one of my favorite Christmas songs now.

    I saw the video for "Unworthy" a long time ago. I was at EMI and I was very interested in signing David for the US since his album was on Hut through Virgin in the UK. That's when I found out that "Unworthy" was part of his solo album instead of being under the Thieves moniker.

    Back then, I didn't see the complete clip either, just the first half of it on a compilation reel. When I saw it again recently, I knew immediately that it had to be the work of Sophie Muller. It has all of her trademark touches.

  3. You almost have my exact same McAlmont experiences! My first purchase was also Unworthy but I discovered him on late night TV. He's probably my artist of the year due to all the things you mentioned above: the interactivity, the amazing concert and the way he now does business. Have you ordered a version of the forthcoming live CD/DVD? I opted for a limited edition signed one with a hand written lyric sheet, couldn't resist it.

  4. what a beautiful song and one that shamefully I wasn't aware of until after Christmas. What a delightful voice. I am sad that I keep "forgetting" about him, although I'm off to iTunes now to catch up on his catalogue. You and Dan will be pleased!

  5. @DanProject76 - Isn't it amazing how you can remember the exact place and circumstances the first time you hear a song?

    I have ordered my CD/DVD set. In fact, I'm gonna do my best to swing over to London to see David the final night of his forthcoming UK tour. My Anglocentricities need some attention. :)

  6. @Paul - Imagine how much you'll play this NEXT Christmas. Everytime I play it, someone asks me about it. That's the sign of something special.

    Most of his catalog is available on iTunes with the exception of a few odds and ends.

    I have a feeling we're gonna hear a lot more from David in 2011.

  7. I adore David. I could get lost in his voice all day. People who haven't heard his music don't know what they are missing.

  8. To give you some background to the song, David asked his facebook friends to submit their Christmas stories and he would choose one to write a song about. I was lucky enough for David to choose our story about when my son James was born and the traumatic time we had when he came into the world. We were delighted that David and Guy chose our story to convert to lyrics and we're so happy that out of a difficult time in our lives, comes a song that bring so much joy to people. Miracles do happen, especially at Christmas!! Ange

  9. @Ange Chan - Thanks for the background. It makes a special song even MORE lovely.

  10. I get lost in David's voice all night.