By Heart Piano SolosAlthough his name might not immediately ring a bell with music listeners, Jim Brickman has quietly been amassing hit records since his arrival on the music scene in 1994. His music has been classified under many genres, including New Age, jazz, and adult contemporary. It is this last label that has given him the most recognition and Brickman is considered to have more songs and albums on the adult contemporary charts than any other artist. In total, six albums have made it to either gold or platinum levels, attesting to his musical talent and the global appreciation of his music.
While his first album, No Words, failed to chart, the next one would be a major success. Although By Heart only climbed to 184 on the Billboard charts, its timeless nature would eventually sell enough copies to reach the gold record status. By Heart is essentially a piano album, featuring mostly piano solos with only one vocal song and only the addition of light strings on some of the other songs. The last song, which bears the same title as the album, features Laura Creamer singing the vocals and delivering a strong emotional message.
As Jim Brickman has gone on to a very successful career after the release of By Heart, his fans have held on to this early album as one of his best. Two of the songs from this album, Angel Eyes and If You Believe, garnered a place on adult contemporary radio and still remain in regular rotation. The vocal piece, By Heart, rose to the top 20 songs and set the table for later albums by Jim Brickman that would feature collaborations with notable artists like Martina McBride and Michael W. Smith. Brickman often works with musicians from a wide range of genres and his talent always finds a place in each new musical setting.