Christopher Cross

Live Shot

Phases & Stages

Christopher Cross

One World Theatre, Jan. 18

Nearly 30 years after his five-Grammy debut, Christopher Cross (né Geppert) returned to Austin last Sunday for a pair of storyteller-style shows at One World Theatre. Born in San Antonio, Cross played guitar in 1960s teen rock combo the Psychos before landing in Flash, a cover outfit that traversed Texas during the next decade. He was signed to Warner Bros. after a performance at Austin's Alamo Roadhouse in October 1978. Introduced here by KLBJ's Charlie Hodge, Cross and his fourpiece band opened the second show with "Never Be the Same." It was like stepping into an adult contemporary time machine set to 1980 – the last gasp of West Coast studio polish bravely asserting itself in the sneering faces of New Wavers with sideways haircuts. The genteel, capacity crowd responded with fealty that went well beyond applause of recognition. Cross strategically parceled out his hits across the 90-minute set, leaving plenty of room for lesser-known songs from his post-Warner catalog. "Deputy Dan" recounted Cross' ambition to follow in Steely Dan's chop-happy footsteps, while "Walking in Avalon" elbowed boundaries of polite conversation with a lyric about taking mushrooms. Without 48 tracks to work with, most of the arrangement coverage fell to saxophonist David Mann, who filled gaps as needed and faithfully reproduced the emblematic solo from 1981's "Arthur's Theme (Best That You Can Do)." Sadly, this approach couldn't nudge main set closer "Ride Like the Wind" out of second gear. Hearing the song sans Michael McDonald's "such a long way to go" was like eating french fries without ketchup. Even so, the audience clapped along and gave Cross a standing ovation.

More Christopher Cross
The Reluctant Celebrity
The Reluctant Celebrity
Christopher Cross

Margaret Moser, Jan. 20, 2012

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
I Got Your Medicine (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, Feb. 24, 2017

Texas Platters
Adam Torres
I Came to Sing the Song (Record Review)

Alejandra Ramirez, Feb. 24, 2017

More by Greg Beets
Texas Platters
John Wesley Coleman III
Microwave Dreams (Record Review)

Feb. 10, 2017

Top 10 Austin Albums of 2016
Top 10 Austin Albums of 2016
The Chronicle music staff picks their favorite local records

Dec. 30, 2016


Christopher Cross

AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

Updates for SXSW 2017

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)