Samara Joy has followed up her major label debut album, Linger Awhile, with a new take on a holiday song, “Warm In December.”
“Warm In December” was originally written by Bob Russell and is relatively unknown and rarely performed by modern artists. The most commonly known recording of it was released by Julie London in 1956, and Joy’s new version provides a refreshing addition to the holiday song cannon.
“I’ll keep you warm in December/Warm when the cold breezes blow,” she sings in her rich tone over double bass, piano and brushed drums. “My arms so lovin’/A kind of oven/To melt the sleet and snow.”
Joy released her major label debut album in September, with the 22-year-old’s record providing timeless standards for a new generation. Earlier this week (November 15), the album was nominated for Best Jazz Vocal Album at the 65th Grammy Awards, while Joy is also in the running for Best New Artist at the ceremony, which will take place next year.
The record features, among others, a cover of the classic “Can’t Get Out Of This Mood,” which was notably performed in the past by Nina Simone and Frank Sinatra. Joy first teased the classic cover on TikTok, where she boasts a loyal following of over 137,000 users and has amassed over 1.3 million likes. While sharing her work online, Joy’s fanbase has grown to include the likes of Hollywood giants Regina King and LaKeith Stanfield.
“There’s such an incredible and rich history of Black female singers. I see so much of myself in them and see the way they paved the way so I can do what I’m doing,” Joy told Andscape in a recent interview. “And then the way that they sing and the songs they sing, I can relate to and hopefully carry it and pass it down so that nobody forgets those Black female singers who have such an impact and influence on music as a whole.”
Buy or stream “Warm In December.”