Concert Review: Brian Free & Assurance
May 17, 2010 1 Comment
Last Thursday night our church Brian Free & Assurance. The crowd was very good, as most of the lower part of the church was full and there were a significant number of people in the balcony. My guess is probably between 200-250 people in attendance. Here is the setlist:
- Joyful, Joyful We Adore Thee
- Go Tell the World
- I Believe God
- Praying Man
- Just A Little Talk With Jesus
- Sheltered in the Arms of God
- Save Me A Seat
- I Am Redeemed
- Jesus Will Pick You Up
- First Day in Heaven
- Acappella Medley (All Hail the Power, Crown Him Jesus, Revive Us Again)
- You Must Have Met Him
- For God So Loved
- What Will You Choose
- Long As I Got King Jesus
Brian Free & Assurance hit the stage with “Joyful Joyful” from their acappella CD, and it’s a great way to start out the concert. The high acappella song going in to the fast and furious “Go Tell The World” is definitely a big time energy jolt to get the concert and crowd going. It doesn’t hurt that “Go Tell The World” is one of my son’s favorite songs by the group, either. “Praying Man” was electric as well. Slowing things down by using the stools for “Sheltered” is a nice touch to the concert, and the arrangement they use is gorgeous.
Brian spent a few minutes after that song requesting prayer for his dad, who is in the hospital in Marietta, GA after falling at his home. His injury is very serious, and Brian was having a difficult time last night being gone and away from his dad. I would encourage all of you to pray for Jim Free and his recovery, and pray for Brian to have the strength to get through this weekend trip and back to his dad. I can’t emphasize enough the worlds of respect that I gained for Brian last night. He poured his heart into the concert, all the while being very concerned for his father’s health. Brian, we love you buddy, and will continue to lift both you and your dad up in prayer. In sharing about his father, Brian shared the story of Jeremy Lile losing his father last fall and then driving to Louisville after the funeral and singing “Save Me A Seat”, which he then called for the next song. That was one of the most touching, heart wrenching moments I’ve ever experienced in a concert. Had the concert ended then, there would have been no doubt that BFA had truly ministered to those in attendance, and the crowd went to their feet when it was over. I dare say that will go down as Jeremy Lile’s signature song, as I can’t imagine anyone else singing it with the effectiveness that Jeremy does.
Brian then stepped up and sang the group’s latest single, “I Am Redeemed”, and it’s a classic Brian Free tenor ballad, and I can’t help to think it was sung more emotionally last night than he’s ever done it before. “Jesus Will Pick You Up” closed out the first half of the concert on a high note, quite literally, as Brian absolutely soared on the ending of the encore. After the intermission, they hit the stage with “First Day in Heaven”, which could equally serve as well as the second song following the acappella number if they wanted to switch the set list up some. A great performance of the medley from acappella started off a little rough, but once they got going they nailed the song. “You Must Have Met Him” has one of the most marketable sounds as a single I’ve heard in a long time, and comes across well in concert. What can I say about “For God So Loved” other than it absolutely brought down the house. Brian said he’s sung the song every night since they recorded it in 1996 and he’ll never get tired of it. It’s truly one of the all time great songs of the genre. “Long As I Got King Jesus” left the crowd in a great spirit.
I also want to take a minute to commend my pastor. As he was dismissing the crowd last night, he pulled Brian over to him and instead of simply dismissing the crowd, he led the audience in a prayer for Brian’s dad. Bro. Bob Lane, that was a tremendously classy move, and one of the reasons I’m so glad to call you my pastor, and my friend.
It was a great night of music last night. Nothing was said from the stage about Randy’s departure, and if you didn’t know it before, you would never be able to guess it. Be looking for Randy to land on his feet rather soon. It was a terrific concert, and provided some of the most genuinely heartfelt moments I’ve experienced. Also, Bill Shivers once again demonstrated why he is one of the most underrated lead singers in the business. I don’t think you’ll find a better lead singer on the road. Please do not miss these guys when they are in your area. If you can catch them this weekend, be sure to do so and wish Randy well. After that, go see them and welcome Derrick back to the road.