For over 40 years, Aled Jones MBE has been the (un)official ‘voice of Christmas’ since recording Walking In The Air for the 1982 adaptation of the Raymond Briggs’ classic, The Snowman.
Aled has gone on to become a household name, much loved for his radio and TV presenting work which includes hosting breakfast shows on Classic FM and BBC One’s Songs of Praise. He has sung for us all; from the Royal Family to the Pope, and in venues including The Vatican, the Hollywood Bowl and Buckingham Palace. He has released over 40 albums, the latest of which is the fourth instalment in his One Voice series, One Voice – Full Circle, in which he ‘duets’ with his younger self: baritone and treble. We wanted to know
What Makes Aled
My family. That and my singing – and Arsenal winning the football. I’ll tell you what else makes me happy; Christmas. Christmas makes me happy.
I think any form of hatred makes me sad. Aggression makes me sad. Also, I go into central London on weekends for my show and I’m very often on my motorbike riding in. Seeing all the homeless people makes me really sad. I think in the world we live in now, the fact that some have so much and some have nothing that makes me sad.
I suppose as I get older health makes me a little fearful. Not a lot though to be honest with you, it’s not something I dwell on. That’s about it really. Everything else you can really cope with.
Getting older makes me reflective. The album I’ve just done made me very reflective because it made me think of past and for the first time really properly acknowledge my boyhood career and what it did for me. The part it played in making me who I am. And also music of course, it makes you reflect a lot. Certain pieces take you back to a moment in time don’t they?
Selfishness and arrogance make me angry. People being exploited makes me angry. I’m not somebody who gets angry very easily to be honest with you.
Knowing that I’ve put in the leg work. I wouldn't be confident if I didn't. I don’t like leaving things to chance. If I’ve done my homework then I can relax.
Music; carols. On December 1 at Classic FM we turn on the sound of Christmas. Some people think that’s way too early; I’d turn it on September if I could – and it’s not just for the royalty cheque! The music just makes me feel happy, it reminds me of childhood and I think everyone is just nicer to one another at Christmas. I love the magic of the whole thing, it’s a time to close the front door and just be with friends and family.
One Voice – Full Circle, Aled Jones MBE celebrates 40 years in showbusiness featuring old favourites plus some previously unreleased tracks, including Bright Eyes, Scarborough Fair, Pie Jesu and a stripped-back piano solo version of Walking In The Air. Out now via Decca Records in association with Classic FM.
Image: © Ray Burmiston