A LITTLE BACKGROUND MUSIC
Lead vocalist in a trio of Cleveland rock bands in her teens, Anne Cochran was putting down demos and jingles before making everything official with a degree in Theater and Voice from Case Western Reserve University. She and her friend, Jim Brickman, had won the You Light Up My Life radio contest they joke about now before they were 18, making it impossible to honor the attached cocktail lounge play dates, being under age minors!
After college, Anne continued to play the band circuit in and around town, brought out a self-titled debut album, followed by Fishhead label's "Thinking of You", and wed her favorite fan and attorney. Once she began growing her little family, the gigs pretty much came to a halt, but Anne continued to pursue a successful career as the familiar voice of hundreds of well-known television and radio commercials. Had you only known…
Jim Brickman was taking big strides out west at that time, but the pair had a forever friendship that would bridge the distance. The turning point came when he asked Anne to be his vocalist on an Asian tour in the wake of "By Heart "success. Jim was convinced his fans would love Anne's voice and her radiant persona. Their duo worked its magic and soon the pair had a first big date at Lincoln Center, fine-tuning their playful banter and polishing their sound: "Jim lured me back on stage and into the mainstream. After my 'big amp' experiences in rock, it was simply amazing to hear my own voice again!"
ON THE ROAD...
Today, most of the year is devoted to touring with Jim and crew. A six-week, +30-stop Holiday Tour has been the jubilant yearly climax of their collaboration for more than a decade. Since 1995, Anne has shared memorable duets with the likes of Collin Raye, Donny Osmond, Dave Koz, Tracy Silverman, Jeff Timmons, Kristy Starling, Greek tenor Mario Frangoulis, Michael Feinstein, Broadway's Mike Eldred, Wayne Brady, Michael Bolton, Linda Edder, Orlagh Fallon, Richie McDonald, … Her most recent and perhaps favorite tour sidekick of all, is Canadian Mark Masri "because we play off each other so well". "Each new talent and personality I work with brings out a different facet of my own capabilities, keeping my job fresh, never ho-hum," says Anne. "I'm so lucky to be doing exactly what I love to do!"
Some of her most cherished performances have been enriched by "joint ventures" with the symphony and pops orchestras of Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Minneapolis, Phoenix, Louisville, Kansas City, Hartford, Cincinnati, Nashville, Columbus…and their eminent conductors. The first Brickman show at Carnegie Hall, with Jim and Tracy SIlverman, and an electric Anne in perfect pitch, will always be a precious milestone.
"AFTER ALL THESE YEARS"
In 1999, Anne hit the Top 5 with her now classic single "After All These Years". Triggering stage and TV performances, including NBC's A Golden Moment, as well as Stars On Ice at Madison Square Garden and Gund Arena, the song was sung by Anne to accompany Olympic medalist and dear friend Rosalynn Sumners' farewell to ice... It seemed only natural to repeat the performance at Roz's fairytale Palm Springs wedding in 2004.
Guest appearances on all four Brickman & Friends PBS specials, (Anne's personal favorite being "Beautiful World", taped live in Niagara Falls in 2009), gala evenings such as Hollywood's CAMIE Awards and solo concerts on Jim's famed escape cruises continue to open new vistas for the sparkling chanteuse. She has sung The National Anthem for many of Cleveland's sport's teams and stirred the crowd with a crystalline rendering of ESPN"s broadcast of The Star Spangled Banner at the NCAA's Women Basketball Championship Final 2008 playoff…
IN HER OWN RIGHT
In her own right, Anne carves out the time to co-write original material and put her musical stamp on classic favorites from the American songbook. She has released a wonderful series of CDs in the past decade, with evocative titles like "Lucky Girl", "This is the Season", "All my Best" (sold out), Cover Girl", and her exciting and very latest opus, "Close To Me"... See Discography, for full details.
Apart from her solo Cain Park performances and standing room only launch concerts for "Close To Me" CD at Cleveland's Nighttown in 2009, Anne has experienced personal success with popular hits "After All These Years" and "Someone Is Missing at Christmas". She also co-hosted a gala fund-raiser with comedian Bob Newhart, and is a frequent flyer at NYC's Birdland's Cast Party, She is currently preparing her set as a featured artist at Jim's 2010 Summer Music Fest in Cleveland. A word to the wise!
She loves co-hosting Brickman's syndicated radio show on occasion, and also enjoys guest emceeing NBC's "Good Company Today" morning talk show, filling in for one of the usual hosts, and gravitating from interviews to hands-on cooking segments: all with equal aplomb. Is there anything this girl can't do?
Anne is currently working on a new holiday CD with classics and originals that will be sure to please, hopefully released in time for the 2010 Holiday Tour. It will be another welcome addition to the available samplings of her music, online, at selected sellers and at concert venues, coast-to-coast.
NO PLACE LIKE HOME
As much as she enjoys performing across the country, Anne clearly cherishes family time at home in her native Cleveland. On one of the first Christmas Tours, and before "The Bus", her eldest son came along for a live geography lesson in the air. On long stretches like these, the Cochran's make a point of regrouping at regular intervals to catch up with their favorite star on tour. The loving support of Anne's family, her unique organizational skills, yoga classes and unmatched VIM status (very involved mom) are the stabilizing factors that enable her to enjoy the best of two worlds.