TJ Thomas brings touch of country to benefit CDWritten by Danielle Stanton | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Country artist TJ Thomas said he hopes people remember their own family traditions as they listen to his song “Christmas Time in My Hometown,” which he recorded for the Make-A-Wish Foundation benefit CD.
“I’m hoping [the song] takes them back to a good place and a good time at Christmas and brings back some good memories,” Thomas said. “If it makes them cry, it touched them.”
Thomas wrote the song about 15 years ago reflecting on memories of his hometown of Manchester, Mich., where he sat around with family members eating his mom’s homemade pie and playing his favorite Christmas songs.
“Mom made apple pie and we’d play music,” he said. “It brought everybody together. At that time of year people put some of the petty stuff aside and put a smile on.”
Old and young alike can relate to the song, he said, which is the only Christmas song he has ever written.
“I wanted this to come off as if we were sitting in a living room with family and friends — not a lot of hoopla,” he said.
“There’s a line in the song about peace on Earth all year ’round and that’s a great thing to wish for and I think anybody who can celebrate Christmas can relate to this song, whether it’s mom’s homemade pie or cookies.”
Thomas said he talked to producer and Toledo Free Press writer Mighty Wyte, who told him about the benefit CD, and decided to donate his time and talents as a way to give back.
“I love [giving back],” he said. “I lost my dad to cancer when he was 52. Any time I have a chance to help people out I want to do it. I just think it’s a great cause. I’m all on board.”
Thomas said he doesn’t have a lot of money and his music — which he calls “strong medicine” — is one way he can help a sick child.
“I’m not made of money and it’s the only way I know I can help,” he said. “When I was asked to do it, you don’t have to ask me twice — let’s get to it.”
Thomas recorded “Christmas Time in my Hometown” with his band Kentucky Strait. He said the recording process took 20 minutes.
“My piano and bass player went in in August and we spent maybe 20 minutes in there and did a track to make sure we got the sound right and cut it from there,” he said.
Thomas was born in Findlay and grew up in Manchester. After graduating from high school in 1981, he hit the road, touring across the United States. After 35 years in the business, he now lives in Point Place and plays throughout Michigan and Ohio.
Tags: Christmas, Country artist TJ Thomas, FIndlay, Kentucky Strait, Make-A-Wish Foundation benefit CD, Manchester, Point Place, Toledo Free Press writer Mighty Wyte, United States, “Christmas Time in My Hometown”