Following a brief but magic-tinged instrumental introduction that sets up the beat and overall melodic tone of the track, Tealand Smith’s “Christmas Day in America” is quickly running away with our hearts on the back of Smith’s incredible vocal. Velvety and soft and yet strong enough to capture and keep out attention throughout every second of this track and the music video inspired by its story, Smith’s voice is our gateway to the essence of the holiday season and what makes it so special to begin with. This is Christmas music for the R&B crowd, but right now it’s appealing to just about anyone who likes a prominent pop hook.
Whether consumed in its single or video formats, “Christmas Day in America” gushes with an affectionate melodicism that could be considered overindulgent – were it not being assembled by a singer with this caliber of talent, that is. Tealand Smith is very careful in his approach here, but he’s not reticent about jumping after the rhythm of the instruments with as much of a carefree sway as he can from behind the mic. His vocal layers us with thick bands of harmonious tonal gold, but never does it become so powerful that we aren’t able to enjoy the other elements here (almost as much as we do his verse).
“Christmas Day in America” isn’t the first exciting new Christmas song that I’ve happened to come across in the past couple of weeks, but while its narrative is nothing new, the skillset of its leading man is something to take note of for certain. There isn’t a second of audio here in which Tealand Smith isn’t bringing his A-game to the harmony, and while I will need to hear a little more from him to determine whether or not he can do more than give a profound holiday performance, this has made quite the first impression on me.
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