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We're going to visit my mother over the holidays, and she asked if we want to see Jim Brickman or the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. I have to confess that I know almost nothing about Jim Brickman, isn't he a new-age pianist? Has anyone seen him in concert, I gather that it's not solo piano? Any comments from people who've attended his concerts? Is he religious?

How about Trans-Siberian Orchestra? (Granted a totally different experience, but I actually love TSO) however, I don't know that I'm up to a big arena style concert. Anyone ever seen them? Will my ears be ringing for days afterwards?

Should we go to either of these? Neither? Both?

Last edited by ShiroKuro; 12/12/09 02:16 PM.

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I saw Jim Brickman in concert almost one year ago to be exact in Aurora, IL. He is indeed considered a new-age pianist. He is a solo pianist and not a religious or contemporary Christian pianist.

His set mostly consisted of him playing some of his pieces and interacting with the audience. He had a soloist performing with him. They were high school friends back in Ohio. He also had a guy who played the electric violin performing. It seems as if he seeks out young promising pianists in the cities that he visits so he had a high school senior from one of the area's schools performing a number.

My husband and I enjoyed the concert and we would certainly go to another of his concerts. I would certainly recommend his concerts to any piano loving individual.

I have never heard of the TSO so I have no comment on this group.

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Hmm, it looks like he might have the same violinist this time (I'm kind of interested in the violinist too)

If you're curious about TSO, it's... what? Rock Christmas opera? Carol of the Bells meets Metallica?

Here:

TSO Christmas Eve/Sarajevo 12/24

It's not for everyone, but for some reason I love TSO, and Mr SK is kind of interested. I just don't know if I'm up for a huge concert.

Of coruse, if I wait long enough to decide, the decision will be made for me!


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I have never seen Jum Brickman in concert, so I can't say much about that. I have seen TSO and the show was great! We did not go this year, but as I understand it, they are doing a typical TSO concert. First half is one of the Christmas CDs, second half is a mix of other things, with a few pieces from their new CD, Night Castle, in there. It is a big production, arena-style show. You might want to bring earplugs if you are sensitive to loud shows. I didn't find them particularly bad. Their sound is quite good, and I often find it is the shows with badly set up/mixed sound that bother my ears more.

Where would you be seeing them? If on the West Coast, one of the vocalists touring with them this year is a fave of mine, Jeff Scott Soto. He's also on the new Night Castle CD.


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If "both" is an option, then that's my vote!

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Shiro, I have been to both and loved both. If you like TSO's music, their concerts are an amazing experience. This Thursday my family and I are going to our straight fourth TSO concert in as many years. thumb So if I only had to choose one, I'd go to TSO just because they put on the best show--fireworks, lasers, a gazillion lights rotating on massive girders overhead, falling snow (yup, falling snow), flames shooting in the air, etc. etc. In our local paper, they had an interview with the band's founder, and he said that TSO's lasers are better than anybody else's and puts out the thickest, most intense laser beam of light. He went on to say that there are only 10 of those laser machines in the world, and TSO owns all 10 of them. They also spend more on pyrotechnics and lighting than all the other rock groups touring combined (or so he says). But I believe it because it is a spectacular show.

And it's loud, but not TOO loud. Or, at least, I've been to louder concerts.

On the other hand, Jim Brickman's concerts involve lovely new age piano music, and he is a wonderful entertainer. I was pleasantly surprised at how funny he is; it was almost like a combined stand-up comedy show with beautiful piano music.

Okay, I guess you gotta go to both! grin

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p.s. Brickman's shows (at least the ones I've gone to) are not overtly religious or even particularly Christmas-themed. (He'll play a few traditional Christmas songs but plenty of other material.) While he does have other musicians appear with him, the piano is the central instrument and he plays a lot of solo pieces. The violinist guy was pretty cool. thumb

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Hmmm, this is hard (and time is running out.) Brickman and TSO are on the same day!!! frown

I think it may be TSO, becuase I think Mr SK will enjoy that more than Brickman. Thanks for all the comments everyone, I'll post back if we get tickets.

BTW, I have a TSO score book for solo piano. I haven't been able to convince myself to play Christmas Eve yet, since I know it just won't compare! Maybe next year...


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Originally Posted by Monica K.
... I'd go to TSO just because they put on the best show--fireworks, lasers, a gazillion lights rotating on massive girders overhead, falling snow (yup, falling snow), flames shooting in the air, etc. etc.
I went to see them a few years ago, and the music was good, but what you mention above are many of the reasons I don't want to see them again. I don't like shows so much as the music.
Originally Posted by Monica K.

And it's loud, but not TOO loud. Or, at least, I've been to louder concerts.
That was the worst part for me. I didn't know enough to bring ear plugs, and I ended up having to plug my ears with my fingers most of the evening. Just not enjoyable.

So I vote for Jim Brickman. (If anyone wants to send me tickets! smile )


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Originally Posted by MaryBee
Originally Posted by Monica K.

And it's loud, but not TOO loud. Or, at least, I've been to louder concerts.


That was the worst part for me. I didn't know enough to bring ear plugs, and I ended up having to plug my ears with my fingers most of the evening. Just not enjoyable.



Teenagers will respond to the complaint that it's too loud by saying "if it's too loud you're too old" - to which, of course, you could and should respond "if it's not too loud you're too deaf" - a growing problem among frequent concert goers of all ages.

If the volume is physically painful and you need ear plugs it's too damn loud! I had this problem last year at an Amy Grant concert, of all things, where her backing band played at the decibel level of a hanger full of jumbo jets all warming up.

Why do so many bands (and their fans) equate loudness (and/or blazing light shows)with musical quality? My theory is that such things are often there on purpose for the sole reason of distracting from the basic lack of musical quality.

JF


Last edited by John Frank; 12/14/09 02:13 PM.

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Originally Posted by MaryBee
Originally Posted by Monica K.
... I'd go to TSO just because they put on the best show--fireworks, lasers, a gazillion lights rotating on massive girders overhead, falling snow (yup, falling snow), flames shooting in the air, etc. etc.
I went to see them a few years ago, and the music was good, but what you mention above are many of the reasons I don't want to see them again. I don't like shows so much as the music.

That's my feeling with TSO. I've seen them 5 times (my ex-boyfriend just loved them, so drug me along every year).
I find that about half an hour in I am so exhausted from all the flashing and everything, I just want to go to sleep. In fact, the last time I went I think I did doze for a bit, despite the loudness of it -- that's how exhausting I find it. When I'm that worn out, I can't even enjoy the music anymore - even though I love them on the radio.

Others love the show, so it really just depends on the individual.


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