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Jim Brickman: Comfort and Joy 

When: Thu., Dec. 22 2016
A collaboration with Kenny Rogers, "That Silent Night," is one of many highlights on Brickman's latest holiday release, On a Winter's Night: The Songs and Spirit of Christmas, which was released exclusively via Amazon last year. Brickman, a Shaker Heights native, has put out several holiday-themed releases and, as he revealed to us last year, it's an area he loves to explore. "It's my favorite time of year to release music and to tour," he says. "I love the spirit of what it's about and the nostalgia of it. And it doesn't have a lot of rules around it. You can kind of do anything you want to and it's okay because it's Christmas. So you could do like an instrumental song of a piece you wouldn't normally do on a record, and people will connect to it because of the nostalgia of it. I feel like it's really a blank slate." Brickman put that creative freedom to good use on On a Winter's Night, putting an interesting melodic spin on the classic poem, "'Twas the Night Before Christmas," with John Oates handling the vocals. He'll bring that holiday spirit close to home tonight at 7:30 at Severance Hall, which seems like a good way to wrap up his first 20 years as a recording artist — a career that has racked up 30 hits on the Billboard Adult Contemporary charts, along with two Grammy nominations and four gold albums. Tickets start at $35. (Matt Wardlaw)

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