Jim Brickman Makes 'Magic' With Johnny Mathis, Megan Hilty on New Christmas Album
Musician extraordinaire Jim Brickman is at it again. The talented musician is currently on tour promoting a brand new Yuletide collection titled "The Magic Of Christmas." It’s a disc that he is excited for his fans to hear. "I love this record. I was trying to make something that was classic and nostalgic and beautiful. I wanted to have guests on it that were stellar and classic in their own right, and have a timeless and classic quality."
That "timeless and classic quality" also serves as a description for the special guest on the album – such as Megan Hilty, Sandi Patty and the legendary Johnny Mathis, who lends his vocals to "Sending You A Little Christmas." Brickman told Billboard that was definitely an unforgettable moment. "It was surreal, and definitely a ‘pinch me’ moment. I was so honored, and he sounds so beautiful. Especially because I wrote the song that he’s singing, it was meaningful to me. It wasn’t something like ‘Silent Night,’ where you’re just performing. It was actually a song that I wrote."
Whether it be Susan Ashton, Collin Raye, or Martina McBride, collaborations are something that have always clicked for Brickman. He says he definitely feels it makes him raise his game. "In a sense that you both bring something special to the recording experience. Ultimately, you learn and grow from it, and you become better for it. All of those things are really important in an artists’ life, because you’re always on the journey."
He also admits that as an entertainer, he feels he can better himself by seeing how other artists approach their craft. "It’s never something where you say ‘I’m done learning. I know what I’m doing.’ I always thing you can learn something, whether from a co-writer, a producer, or another artist. I learn so much, and collaborations are such an important part of my career."
Brickman is a recording artist, a live performer, an author, and a radio host – among many of his jobs. Needless to say, you won’t find him dozing too much, but he says that’s fine with him, as it all works together. "I don’t sleep that much, to be honest. I love every aspect of what I do, and I don’t look at it to be busy just to be busy. It is purposeful. Everything that I do complements the core of what I feel like I represent – inspiration, romance, messages, and all of the things I do reflect that, whether it’s a book, an interview, radio, or recording. I feel it complements it all."
Holiday music discs have always struck a chord with listeners, and Billboard asked Brickman why he feels people are so emotionally attached to their favorites. "First of all, the melodies have been with us for hundreds of years, and I think there’s a quality to that which evokes to what music does best – connects you emotionally to loved ones, and creates an environment. It just takes us to a very emotional and nostalgic place. A lot of the reasons I have done so much Christmas music is that I believe there’s a lot of opportunity to take a melody and play an instrumental version of it. For example, there’s not that very many instrumental versions of a song like ‘God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen,’ ‘We Three Kings’ or ‘Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas.’ As many times as you hear them, you don’t hear often a piano instrumental pop version of them, and I think that’s one of the reasons Christmas music resonates."
"The Magic Of Christmas" is available at Target.