February 9, 2001
Valentine concert a labor of love
By Jim Purdy
Piano man Jim Brickman plays the ultimate romantic song.
"Valentine" works pretty well on Valentine's Day, anyway.
He's sharing that special day and his special song with fans in Tempe on Wednesday.
"For a long time, we've had a wonderful fan base growing in Arizona, and I think I've made some really
good friendships there. It seemed like the perfect place to come at the perfect time of year," Brickman
said in a January phone interview.
Last year Brickman said he would be easing up on the accelerator pedal of his piano, promising to
perhaps take a year off, write music, reflect and recollect.
Brickman has performed dozens of concerts since then, including a big blowout PBS special with his
good buddies, keyboardist David Benoit, violinist Tracy Scott Silverman, jazz saxophonist Dave Koz and
singers Anne Cochran, Olivia Newton-John and Donny Osmond.
"It was a wonderful experience. Whenever you get a chance to work with your friends - and your friends
happen to be extremely talented - it tends to be a great experience. It was a wonderful way to take my live
show and capture it for television," he said.
"My Romance: An Evening With Jim Brickman" anchored some August PBS pledge drives and made its
way to music store shelves as CDs and DVDs.
The musical ideas constantly bouncing around Brickman's head keep him busy, too.
"I write throughout the year, and I keep these cassette tapes with ideas on them and I throw them into
the drawer. When I'm ready to record, I open up the drawer and I take the germ of an idea and flesh it
out," he said.
Once again, Brickman vowed to stay at his Los Angeles home more this year - just Brickman and his
"I'm going to try to go for simplicity. I want to get back to my solo nature - when people can listen and get
lost in the solo piano music."