Former “American Idol” Season 7 finalist, Aussie Michael Johns, releases his first ever Christmas song today, and he’s gifting all of the proceeds to charity.
“Another Christmas,” which is available on iTunes, will benefit the fight against Lou Gehrig’s Disease (ALS) and the American Red Cross.
“There’s so many songs written about how everyone’s gonna be home and around the fireplace and everything else and there’s so many situations where families are apart for whatever reason,” Michael recently told AccessHollywood.com. “For the Red Cross thing, it’s troops overseas and for the ALS thing, you can [have] people in a hospital, just sitting there. It’s just so sad.”
As previously reported on AccessHollywood.com, Michael wrote the song in 2006 after he had to break news to his mother and the rest of the Johns family that he wasn’t going to make it back Down Under for the holidays. But it was via his friendship with Access Hollywood’s Nancy O’Dell, who lost her beloved mother Betty earlier this year to ALS, that led Michael to donate half the proceeds to fight Lou Gherig’s Disease.
“The song ‘Another Christmas’ is so beautiful and perfectly says what the holiday season should be about – family,” Nancy said. “I was so very close to my mom who passed away from ALS. I know she would be so honored, as I am, by Michael’s kindness.”
And during a recent visit to Access Hollywood, Michael shared the song with Nancy and several families afflicted by ALS. Performing to just over two dozen moms, dads, grandparents and children, Michael provided holiday cheer in the form a of an on-set private concert, footage of which you can see HERE.
As for the New Year, Michael will finally get around to releasing his first post-“Idol” album, and the rocker said it’s a rootsy record.
“A lot of soul, definitely,” Michael said. “That’s the main thing. It’s rock soul, but there’s elements of Van Morrison in there, there’s elements of Otis Redding, and there’s elements of INXS.”
One of the few contenders on “Idol” who was both a songwriter and performer, Michael said his album will have a mixture of his own tunes and those penned by others.
“I’ve written songs on it solely myself, I’ve co-written songs on it and there’s a couple of songs that have come in from other writers,” he explained. “I’m just kind of at that stage in my career where if it’s a good song, I don’t care where it comes from. I love writing songs, I love collaborating, but Diane Warren, for instance, wrote a song and she said, ‘I think you’d be perfect for this song.’ And I was like, ‘Wow!’ The lyrics really spoke to me, and the melody, and I’m probably going to add it to my record.”
And yes, there will be a rock ballad or two on the as-yet-untitled release.
“There’s one we were cutting the other night that’s very much like that, more on the blues kind of side, but it’s definitely one of those kind boss ballads,” Michael said. “It’s called ‘This Is Goodbye.’ It’s pretty exciting.”