Saturday evening, a sense of romance filled the air as Jim Brickman crossed the stage of Beach/Schmidt Performing Arts Center, which was tightly packed, and took a seat in front of a piano. The solo pianist wasted no time and absorbed himself in the first piece of the night, a beautiful bit that instantly made me want to fall in love; pardon the sentimentality.
After the opening piece, Brickman broke away from the piano to thank the crowd for attending the show. He surprised me with his sense of humor as he informed the large audience the night would be romantic with some handholding or even cuddling; Brickman also encouraged the single people to mingle during intermission.
Brickman surprised me once again by singing along to the popular wedding song, “The Love I Found in You.” He then played the title song of his latest album “Romanza” and then explained that he got his inspiration from Italian love songs. Showing his humor, he told the audience that people could relax in a bubble bath, make out or even make babies to this type of music.
His next piece entitled “Wedding Vows” was not quite as elegant as the previous songs. This composition was country inspired; the next piece, however, was his most classically inspired, which he called “Remembrance.”
One of my favorite songs that Brickman played was “Love of My Life,” a touching song with lyrics that tugged the heartstrings.
Brickman explained to the crowd that he wanted his music to be an escape and a vacation for the mind. He also mentioned that he loves his music to be based on certain themes. When romance is not the theme of Brickman’s compositions, it is more than likely that of atmosphere. One piece, “Edge Water,” was about a beach in Cleveland, where Brickman is originally from. Now living in Southern California, he was lucky enough to catch a rainy night, which inspired his cleverly titled piece “Night Rain.”
Brickman is a believer in lullabies and is working on an album of them for Fisher Price. He played one of his favorites, “Simple Things,” which included the main melodies of familiar songs such as “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star,” “Mary Had a Little Lamb” and “Three Blind Mice.”
Keeping busy, Brickman is also working on a new album entitled “Blessings,” which features hymns and songs of inspiration.
Returning from a brief intermission, Brickman took his seat at the piano once more and played a few more songs. He played another one of his favorites, “Waterfall,” after singing to “Without You in My Life,” which was one of my personal favorites.
Brickman made a medley of songs that he listened to when he was younger to give the audience an idea as to where his positive thoughts came from. Some of the songs included “When You Wish Upon a Star,” “Over the Rainbow” and “It’s Not That Easy Being Green.” He also used “The Rainbow Connection” in the collection of songs and gave the audience a phenomenal impression of Kermit.
To prove that he is the one who responds on his social media accounts such as Facebook and Twitter, Brickman took a picture of the audience and even took a video of everyone cheering and going crazy over him. He said that he would upload the picture and video to Twitter as his proof, which he did.
Brickman mentioned that a fan had tweeted him and requested him to play “The Gift” at Saturday’s concert, so he beautifully performed the meaningful song near the end of the show.
Ending with a patriotic nature, Brickman sang a song with lyrics of living in peace and received a powerful standing ovation as he got up from the piano.
After the audience sat back down, Brickman played the final song, “My Valentine,” made famous by Martina McBride. Just as he wanted the audience to, Brickman seemed to get lost in his own music while passionately playing the piano.
After an evening of listening to such beautiful music, I am completely convinced that I must have Jim Brickman’s songs play at my wedding.