While born in the Scottish Highlands, near Inverness, Michael has been a very welcome adopted son of Dublin city for the last ten years. Together with his wife Edel, he is looking forward to his first Christmas as a parent; the couple became first time parents in August to their now three-month old son, Tom.
The song is reflective, acknowledging and positive also, at its core. Remembering life as a child growing up in snow filled winters in Scotland, Michael allowing himself to consider a visit this winter; seeing family and friends again after so long. Acknowledging the difficulties of the last almost twenty months of lockdown and “licking wounds”. “Looking at and experiencing this reality and still being able to be thankful for having our memories, thankful for having life and for us; thankful for having our beautiful baby son, this Christmas, for Christmas.”
As the song says; “We never thought we’d see a year like this one, but then you made it better by painting life a lighter shade of blue…” Michael says; “It seems so right to have this song now, for Tom’s first Christmas, his presence has gifted us our positive perspective.”
Michael MacLennan relocated to Ireland shortly after releasing his critically acclaimed debut album WOLVES in 2012. A gifted pianist, singer and songwriter he has performed at many of the UK and Ireland’s most established venues as both an artist and a playing alongside industry colleagues and friends; he is one of Dublin’s most in-demand musicians performing on stage with Gavin James, Paul Brady, Declan O’Rourke, Mundy, Wallis Bird, Lisa Hannigan and Gavin Glass amongst many others. Indeed, Michael has been praised by producer Gavin Glass as “one of the greatest writers and musicians I’ve worked with.”
In 2015 Michael achieved another ambition, opening his music school; The Musical Institute. Michael says, “After many years of teaching people from all walks of life, I set up The Music Institute.” He continued, “My aim was simple; to encourage a love of music through exposing students to music they might not normally gravitate towards as opposed to the more traditional approach of forcing grades and exams on everyone! I’m really passionate about this and to hopefully unlock music for students of all ages.”
During one of our Covid lockdown period’s Michael’s school came to the attention of Vodafone. Michael explains; “The advert came about as a direct link to the school – they contacted me asking if I along with some of our students would be interested in doing an advert with them, we were delighted to accept!” Ultimately for Michael the key was the purity of the work and the landscape in which it the advert was created; “The important element was that it was all students of the school (not actors) and the music was performed and sung by the students. It was a massive boost to them during a tough year for everyone.”
The advert was released in May of this year and has already reached almost 1,000,000 views!
You can watch it here:
His love of writing and performing his own music is hugely important to Michael and his love of the process lives through in his new single, For Christmas.
Likewise, with his most recent second album, DREAMERS. DREAMERS is a self-produced, Paul Buchanan inspired (The Blue Nile) confessional long-play reflecting on life and love in modern times and features some of Ireland’s most prominent musicians including Jake Curran (Julia Michaels, Niall Horan, Dermot Kennedy), Aongus Ralston (The Waterboys) and Shane Fitzsimons (Damien Rice, Lisa Hannigan).
This and all of Michael’s work can be accessed on all digital platforms including Spotify;