Fans first met Katharine McPhee on Season Five of American Idol. The runner-up could seemingly sing any style of music, but especially mesmerized millions with her heart-stirring rendition of “Over the Rainbow.” Her first solo album, which debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard Top 200 in early 2007, only hinted at the extent of her talent—not only as a singer but as a songwriter.
Unlike that first effort, McPhee co-wrote the majority of the songs on her second album, Unbroken, collaborating with fellow singer/songwriters Paula Cole, Ingrid Michaelson and Rachael Yamagata. “This record is definitely more personal to me,” McPhee says. “I have more stories to tell. It’s more of an artistic look at me as a person. Coming from a reality show, it’s hard to know the depth of somebody. This record gave me that opportunity to show that. That’s what Verve wanted from me: to make a record I was proud of. It was a huge blessing to give me that.”
Her third studio album, Christmas Is The Time To Say I Love You, capture's McPhee's love of the holiday season.
“Christmas really is my favorite time of year,” says McPhee. “It takes a little imagination to be recording in the summer, but I don’t need a ton of Christmas lights in the studio to inspire me. I know these songs so well. These are the songs I listened to growing up. Hopefully my versions will be unique, but at the same time timeless; full and rich yet simple and intimate.”
The title track of the CD, “Christmas Is The Time…To Say I Love You,” is a rarely covered song originally recorded by rocker Billy Squier in 1981. The album will also be filled with familiar classics, whether traditional or contemporary, from “O Holy Night” and “This Christmas” to a medley of “Away In A Manger”/“O Little Town Of Bethlehem” and “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” featuring trumpeter Chris Botti.