Ride like the wind with Christopher Cross in concert at Dunham Theater

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Photo courtesy of the artist
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Sail away with yacht rock superstar Christopher Cross in concert at Dunham Theater on Saturday, October 1, 2016. 

Singer-songwriter Christopher Cross’ 1979 eponymous album skyrocketed to the top of the pop charts, on the strength of hits “Ride Like the Wind,” “Sailing”, and “Say You’ll Be Mine.”

1983’s Another Page included two more megahits – “Arthur’s Theme (The Best That You Can Do),” which won the Golden Globe and Academy awards for best original song and was the bonus track on the cassette and CD, and “Think of Laura.”

The native San Antonio artist brings those favorites – and a lot of new material – to his performance at Houston Baptist University’s Dunham Theater this Saturday.

A Different Concert Experience

An Evening of Music with Christopher Cross is presented by Brilliant, long known for its conversations with artists, writers, and luminaries. This show departs from that format in its all-music presentation, and the singer himself says he’s looking forward to connecting with the fans.

“It’s definitely a singer-songwriter show,” says the 65-year-old Cross. “We’ll do 75 to 90 minutes and I let people know up front they’ll definitely be hearing the songs they know.”

He says he does that so the audience won’t feel anxious about hearing their favorites, even as Cross and his band offer new material. And, since Cross has cut 14 albums since his debut on the pop charts in 1979, there’s a world of new material to savor.

Secret Ladder, the album released in 2014 shows the singer’s jazz-influenced arrangements and lyrics. When they’re playing, Cross says, he and his musicians get “in our zone,” often riffing off each other.

“It’s not quite as improvisational as jazz can be,” says Cross. “But we’re all serious musicians, and the band members are great players. I love featuring them in solos.”

A Life Filled With Music

“My dad was a doctor, but he played the bass, and I saw how music brought him happiness, so I’ve equated music with being happy.”

He asked for a set of drums but later took up the guitar. For Cross, who counts Joni Mitchell as a mentor an inspiration, it’s the craft of music that moves him. He likes the evolution of lyrics and melodies and calls both of them integral to his process.

“Joni would paint this lyrical landscape with her music and I’ve tried to do that,” he says.

In fact, he’s penned a song called Roberta, an instrumental off an album of guitar music he’s working on, as a dedication to the folk and pop singer. Mitchell’s given name is Roberta.

A Wonderful Ride

As his career has grown over the years, Cross says it’s been a wonderful ride. He and the band perform nearly 80 shows a year and he loves knowing the fans are there cheering him on for their favorite classics, just as easily as they embrace his new releases.

“It’s been a wonderful ride,” he says. “I love what I do more than ever and I am so fortunate to be doing it.”

An Evening of Music with Christopher Cross at Dunham Theater

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Holly Beretto
Holly Beretto writes about food and wine, the arts and interesting people for a variety of local and regional publications. In addition to 365 Things to Do in Houston, her work has appeared in the Arizona State University Alumni Magazine, Arts + Culture Texas, Bayou City Magazine, Downtown, Galveston Monthly and Houston Woman. She is also a regular contributor to Eater.com's Houston site. She earned her B.A. in mass communication with a minor in professional writing from Franklin Pierce College (now Franklin Pierce University) and her M.A. in communication studies with an emphasis in journalism from St. Louis University. She has worked in television news production, public relations and marketing in Rhode Island, Maine, New York and Texas. A native Rhode Islander, she has lived in Texas since 1997. She is the author of Christ as the Cornerstone: Fifty Years of Worship at St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church, published by Bright Sky Press.