The LP sits at No.2 in the latest midweeks on 57,086 sales (Official Charts Company), behind Coldplay's Everyday Life (67,964 sales).
“I’m always writing," said Williams, explaining the album concept. "I’ve never stopped writing since I started, and my diary was a bit boring.
"I’m a middle aged man that’s married with three kids. I’m in a place where I still want to write and still find the need to write something that hopefully becomes the fabric of people’s lives, but I have to figure out a different way to attack it. So I wrote a Christmas song in one particular session – because I wanted to own Christmas, New Year and birthdays – and I really enjoyed it, and I thought could do a whole album of it. Three years later, here it is.”
Released via Columbia, he album features two discs – Christmas Past and Christmas Future – both including a mixture of original songs and Christmas classics, with some star guest appearances including Rod Stewart, Bryan Adams, Jamie Cullum and boxer Tyson Fury.
Williams duet with Nicole Kidman, Somethin' Stupid from his Swing When You're Winning album, was the 2001 Christmas No.1, but the singer does not believe The Christmas Present's lead single Time For Change has chart-topping potential in the streaming age.
“I just think the oxygen that I need has been taken away because streaming is massive and my audience don’t stream," he said. "If we were still in a market where people bought records I’d be in with a shout for Christmas No.1 but, as it happens, my audience don’t stream so it’s going to be very difficult to even get in the Top 20.”
To tie in with the album's release, Williams has launched a new festive podcast, At Home with the Williamses, produced by Sony Music’s 4th Floor Creative. Episode one is available now.
Subscribers can click here to read the full Music Week interview with Williams.