One of my most anticipated concerts of the summer was seeing the band Brian Kirk & the Jirks perform at the Village Green in Summit, NJ, on Tuesday night.
And the seven-piece (usually nine members) cover band did not disappoint, playing memorable tunes from the 70s up to the present.
Brian Kirk & the Jirks had the people dancing, singing, laughing, and just plain enjoying themselves, helping them cope with their COVID-19 worries, at least for the time being.
Brian Kirk, the charismatic frontman of the New Jersey-based band, used his soulful voice to belt out songs: Looking Glass’s Brandy (You’re A Fine Girl), Southside Johnny & the Asbury Jukes’s Talk to Me, Billy Joel’s Scenes From An Italian Restaurant, and New Jersey’s Own Bruce Springsteen’s Thunder Road.
The group also performed Manfred Mann’s Blinded by the Light, a song which “The Boss” wrote and originally recorded in 1973.
Additionally, Freedom Bremner, a wonderful singer, handled the vocals on Lionel Richie’s All Night Long, Bob Marley and The Wailers’s Could You Be Loved, and Stevie Wonder’s You Can Feel it All Over, plus other great tracks.
When songs called for higher octaves, however, the band’s lead guitarist took over. He rocked out to Led Zeppelin’s Black Dog, 4 Non-Blondes’s What’s Up?, and Leo Sayer’s You Make Me Feel Like Dancing.
Kirk, a true showman with undeniable high energy (visible sweat markings and all), even injected a bit of humor into the concert. Although a little dry at times, Kirk told one joke that had the crowd in stitches.
“The Canaries Islands do not have one canary on it,” Kirk, who owns an encyclopedia knowledge of music, told the audience. “The Virgin Islands? Same thing, no canaries.”
But I digress.
One of the highlights of the show was Brian Kirk & the Jirks’s brass section, which was outstanding, adding an element of musical style most cover bands cannot match.
All in all, Brian Kirk & the Jirks came out to party and rock the crowd, which it did, no doubt about it.
Watch the video of You Can feel it All Over below.
— Jerry Del Priore