Todd Almond’s A PONY FOR CHRISTMAS is one last Christmas gift you owe yourself this season
It’s Christmas Day and people everywhere are getting ready for a day of activity, whether it’s a group of people coming for lunch, a dinner outing, or a day of sitting down. on the couch drinking wine, eating bourbon balls and watching Die Hard, Gremlins, and Love, in fact. At some point during the flurry of activity, there will be a moment of quiet humans in the house where some music is called for; maybe there will be a more low-key part of the party when music that is not full of children’s choirs or bells in the background, or there could be a lonely walk in the park, enjoying from the afternoon sky, listening to Spotify on Bluetooth. When that moment comes in each person’s day, they’ll want to use one of the digital platforms to purchase or access Todd Almond’s vacation album A PONY FOR CHRISTMAS.
A few days ago all the Christmas music was off, I was about to do a Heavy Metal crawl on the Pandora station at the gym where I work on weekday mornings. Otherwise, a little folk-rock could have done the trick. Instead, I took charge of my sanity when my friend Abbie Getty urged me, âYou MUST listen to Todd Almond’s new Christmas CD! I admit that I called A Pony For Christmas on Spotify with some sort of grudge, dreading yet another version of “All I Want For Christmas” or “River” (both songs that I loved but my tolerance for them is being tested), and, from the start, Todd Almond caught my eye. Was it a vacation album? Yes, the opening number was called “Maybe This Christmas” but I felt like I was playing Cat Stevens, John Denver, Chris Isaak – in short, Todd Almond spoke my language. For the rest of the evening, I played A Pony For Christmas on repeat, and have been listening to it ever since.
Todd Almond has created such an original vacation CD (indeed, with a lot of original compositions!) It doesn’t flatter listeners, patronize, compromise its artistic aesthetic in the name of the sales. With one of the most enjoyable and individual vocal instruments in the music business, Mr. Almond sounds like the folk-rock singers we all grew up with, and he delves into sound with compositions and songs. arrangements that fit like a woolen winter glove. Listening to his opening track âMaybe This Christmasâ and a special recording of âLittle Drummer Boyâ evoked visions of my youth in Ohio, when the family home was in the middle of a forest of four acres, when the snowfall piled up as high as seven feet, and the family bundled up by the fireplace watching Patricia Neal in The Homecoming. The homecoming vibe here is palpable, in all of Mr. Almond’s artistry as a singer and songwriter, especially on a single instrumental track titled “Christmas Eve”. There is, however, a sense of whimsy and fun on the CD too, especially on Almond’s “Welcome Home” (from his musical ODYSSEY, a wonderfully jazzy track with great beats and brass) and âPoniesâ (which isn’t a Christmas song but is, instead, from his original musical IOWA – but it’s a Christmas present, in all of its original musical glory).
It is, in fact, in his own compositions that Almond obtains his greatest successes on the album, because, despite notable recordings of “O Holy Night”, “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” and (yes, same) “River”, it cannot be denied that by singing his own lyrics, his own melodies, Todd Almond soars to heights that will make people think, feel and reflect on the importance of new music , new artistic talent and new points of view. Even this exhausted and Christmas-weary man who struggled to get into the spirit of the season after such a difficult year, was raised in a place full of hope, throughout the power of music … Todd Almond, one of the last Christmas gifts everyone should have this year, to savor year after year.
Todd Almond A PONY FOR CHRISTMAS is available on all digital platforms and on Todd Almond’s website HERE.