He’s been dubbed ‘the golden voice of Africa’ by 16-time Grammy Award-winning Humberto Gatica (Michael Buble, Michael Jackson, Celine Dion) and now Nigerian sensation Timi Dakolo releases his debut UK album ‘Merry Christmas, Darling’ November 22nd on Hafe Music/Virgin EMI. The stunning title track, featuring Emeli Sandé, is released today – listen here.
Recorded at Abbey Road Studios in London, Timi presents a simply gorgeous, heartfelt collection of soulful Christmas ballads backed by the London Symphony Orchestra. ‘Merry Christmas, Darling’ combines Timi’s unique voice with some of the greatest classical standards ever written. The album, which was two years in the making was additionally recorded in Libreville, Budapest, Lagos and Los Angeles.
The album is Executively Produced by Mr. Ali Bongo Ondimba – the visionary behind the project. Producers Humberto Gatica and award-winning jazz composer Frederic Michel Gassita came together with co-Executive Producer Efe Ogbeni, to create what is set to be the soundtrack of the Holiday. Timi said of recording at Abbey Road studios; “Recording this album one of the greatest experiences of my life. It was like a dream I didn’t want to wake up from.”
Born in Ghana to a Nigerian father and a Ghanaian mother, Timi was primarily raised by his grandmother in Port Harcourt, south-eastern Nigeria, after his mother died when he was just 13. His love of singing was nurtured by his grandmother.
Timi is well known in Nigeria since winning the country’s first ever televised talent competition. His soulful, r&b debut album followed as did a series of stirring, emotional singles including ‘Great Nation’ which has been adopted as the nations second national anthem. His determination to stay true to himself has made him one of Africa’s most loved artists in a music scene dominated by Afrobeats. Influenced by Teddy Pendegrass, Michael Buble, Sam Smith and Luther Vandross, Timi’s eclectic musical palette has inspired him to create music with crossover appeal.
‘Merry Christmas Darling’ is his first Christmas album and also features Eric Benet on ‘White Christmas’, Kenny G. and The Eben Voices of Gabon Choir on ‘Hallelujah’.