November 15, 2021

Tim O'Connell: Silent Nights

As a seasoned songwriter Tim O'Connell is fully aware that most Christmas music is oversaturated fluff with cheesy lyrics. His vocal range is rather limited, but there is nothing wrong with his composing skills, which kept him alive amongst the fierce competition in his hometown Nashville, with the recording of A Singer of Songs by Johnny Cash as the undisputed highlight. On his new album Silent Nights he offers a selection of brand new songs that don't bring cheer, but look at the darker side of the holidays, that time that lonely people feel more lonely, like that aging guy who plays the Santa At The Mall and the kid in I'm Not Getting Anything For Christmas. His Mum has ran off with the neighbour and his Dad numbs the pain by getting very, very drunk. Alcohol is also the deal breaker in the plea for a second chance in Evangeline.

He also takes a look at the bigger picture, like global warming endangering Santa's shop at the North Pole in Let's Save Christmas. His sparse, percussive rendition of The Star-Spangled Banner - save for a short choir interlude and a lonesome guitar - is not proud statement, but a call to arms to reevaluate what really matters and to care for the ones who get left behind. Don't be surprised when the upbeat A Rocking Little Rhythm pops up in the sets of roots rock acts in the years to come. Jazz musicians should take note of A Beach Town in the Winter, a song that is tailor-made for late night sets.

Silent Nights is a self-released album (CD, digital). Buy it from his website.

  1. Silent Nights
  2. Santa At The Mall
  3. Let's Save Christmas
  4. Days Of Wonder
  5. Evangeline
  6. A Rocking Little Rhythm
  7. A Beach Town In The Winter
  8. Is That Not What We Celebrate At Christmas
  9. I'm Not Getting Anything For Christmas
  10. The Star-Spangled Banner The First Noel


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