MANILA, Philippines – Twenty two years since his bestselling “Christmas In Our Hearts” album, singer Jose Mari Chan released his second collection of holiday songs.
Titled “Going Home for Christmas,” Chan’s new album features songs “for everyone” -- from families and couples to children and overseas Filipino workers or OFWs.
For the album, Chan performed with his children and grandchildren, as well as with fellow artists such as Cris Villonco and The CompanY.
In an interview with The Philippine Star published on Monday, Chan shared why it took him 22 years to release another Christmas album.
“It’s not easy to come up with an entire album of original Christmas songs, that’s why most artists only have one Christmas record in their career,” he told the newspaper.
“The songs in ‘Going Home for Christmas’ were written over these past several years. Some as early as 18 years ago, others were composed just in the last two years. There are even a couple of old tunes of mine that I adapted into Christmas songs,” he added.
“With the tremendous success enjoyed by my ‘Christmas In Our Hearts’, I was inspired to come up with another after 22 years.”
Chan further explained: “Generally, pop-music style goes through changes from one era to another, but not Christmas songs. That genre has remained unchanged and since there are very few material that’s released, it was challenging to create new songs that essentially express the same joy, the same spirit and with the same message. In this new Christmas album, I even have two Filipino songs, one with lyrics written by Jimmy Santiago, who wrote our hit ‘Hahanapin Ko’ (sung by Anthony Castelo), and another one with lyrics written by my godson Ogie Alcasid.”
Asked about his favorite Christmas song, Chan said: “’O Holy Night’ is my favorite Christmas song. Since I was a young man, it has never failed to lift my spirit and bring tears to my eyes when the song soars. In ‘Going Home to Christmas’, I adapted the melody of Mascagni’s ‘Intermezzo’ from his ‘Cavaleria Rusticana’ and Fr. Johnny Go SJ, president of Xavier School, wrote beautiful lyrics to it. We titled it ‘Come Let Us Adore Him.’”