Shoreham musician Tom Walker plays all the instruments and sings on his new charity Christmas single, That’s What Christmas Should Be.
You can download it at http://www.iamtjwalker.com. All proceeds are going to his daughter’s school, Shoreham Beach Primary.
Tom has released the single under his new name TJ Walker: “I was no longer able to release music as Tom Walker because of the famous Tom Walker who won a Brit award!”
Tom did a Christmas single last year and, as he says, got bitten by the bug: “I had never thought about doing anything like that before, but my children challenged me to do it. They said ‘Why don’t you write a Christmas song!’ and I just said OK and did… and then decided I wanted to write another one this year. The children say they prefer this year’s song – which displays a kind of progress, I suppose!
“I have got a studio at home and I played everything on it. I have written the song and play all the instruments. There is guitar and bass and drums and piano and vocals, and I tried to capture the elements of my favourite Christmas songs.
“My favourite I would have to say is the Shakin’ Stevens one, which is a bit embarrassing. I like that happy, up-tempo kind of song. It’s quite rock ‘n’ roll. It is difficult to say it is not cheesy, but that’s the inspiration for the kind of feel to it. I wanted an up-tempo positive kind of song rather than something all melancholy.”
Lyrically, it looks at all the elements that make an ideal Christmas, from coming home and turning the phone off, to dimming the lights to view the Christmas tree and choirs turning up on the doorstep.
“I am a big fan of Christmas now that I have got kids. I was keen when I was a child but then there is a bit of a lull before you have your own children which then reignites your own enthusiasm for Christmas again. My children are ten, six and five.”
Tom makes his living as a musician: “I do various different things in my studio. I write music for radio. I write jingles, that kind of thing and library music. I also had a bit of music in a film this year that had Gary Oldman in it. It was called Killers Anonymous, a bit like Alcoholics Anonymous. They are all contract killers and they all sit around the table and tell their stories. I had a bit of music that was like 50s guitar sounding.
“I’ve also written and arranged pieces for the new Trinity College London acoustic guitar exam syllabus. On top of that I’ve self-released my debut album which so far I’ve managed to get 50K streams on Spotify....which I’m quite pleased with as an independent artist!”
As for the name change, it happened after last year’s Christmas single: “I tried to upload some stuff and it came up saying ‘Please choose another name.’ I didn’t understand. I had already had six or seven releases. I kept trying to upload it, and I managed to speak to the support desk in the end.
“It seems that when an artist reaches a certain profile, they stop other artists releasing music under that same name. It is to stop people fraudulently getting lots of plays.
“I said I had already had music under that name, and they just said tough, but it is a good thing really. Nobody would have been able to find me after the other Tom Walker!”