CHRISTOPHER CROSS SAILING INTO RED BANK

Grammy’d-up singer-songwriter Christopher Cross comes to Red Bank’s Two River Theater for an Intimate Evenings concert (and a benefit for Sandy Relief) on Thursday.

By TOM CHESEK

To a huge cross-section of humanity, his songs are integrated with the Soundtrack To Our Lives — whether the number one hit ballad “Sailing” was on the turntable during a certain memorable moment in your adolescence, “Ride Like the Wind” was part of the choral curriculum in your fifth-period music class, or you just heard “Arthur’s Theme (Best That You Can Do)” piped into the Shop-Rite not ten minutes ago.

Yet for all of the units he sold back in the 1980s; for all of the awards that have made his trophy case buckle and groan — no less than five Grammys, a Golden Globe, and even an Oscar for that theme to the 1981 Dudley Moore comedy — we tend to know precious little about Christopher Cross.

Even if you do happen to know a thing or two about the smooth-tenor voiced (but low-key as regards his public persona) singer and songwriter, you might be surprised to find that the San Antonio native divides his residential time between his Texas stomping grounds and Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood. You probably wouldn’t be at all surprised to know that he continues to release new albums of precision-crafted pop music, and to play dozens of live concerts every year – a line of endeavor that brings him to the stage of Two River Theater this Thursday night, January 17.

The 7:30 pm show is the latest in an ongoing series of “Intimate Evenings” events produced by MusicWorks Entertainment, co-founded by former Count Basie Theatre Foundation CEO Rusty Young. In keeping with the MusicWorks mission, portions of proceeds will benefit the nonprofit Hurricane Sandy Relief Foundation and its network of locally based humanitarian and restoration efforts.

The Pop Desk at redbankgreen spoke to the affable, down-to-earth Cross somewhere between the Moon and Red Bank Borough.

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LAURA CRISCI BEATS THE BLUES @BROOKDALE

Singer, songwriter and Brookdale Community College alumna Laura Crisci performs with her formidable “Whoever Shows Up Band” at a special Beat the Winter Blues event Saturday evening at BCC’s Lincroft campus. (Photo by Debra L. Rothenberg) 

On her latest self-released album All Is WellLaura Crisci joins a bevy of veteran Shore area musicians for a set of songs about desire, regret, redemption and trust, maintaining an Americana vibe that’s punctuated every so often by a twanging rocker or even the odd sea chantey.

Saturday night,  this “Prodigal Daughter” – who reconnected to her Monmouth County roots after a successful few years in Nashville – returns to the greater Red Bank green as the homecoming headliner of a special “Beat the Winter Blues: Meet, Mingle & Music” event on the Lincroft campus of Brookdale Community College.

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