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Brandon Heath finds trust at the top of the hill
February 9th, 2011
07:55 AM ET

Brandon Heath finds trust at the top of the hill

You'd think that Christian music singer Brandon Heath hardly ever has a bad day at work. Especially with the No. 1 song (Your Love) and No. 2 album (Leaving Eden) in Christian music. Especially when you consider in the past three years he's been named newcomer of the year and twice been selected male artist of the year.

But that's not necessarily true.

Making "Leaving Eden," his third album with Reunion Records, tested Heath. He didn't always see eye-to-eye with executives at the label and with noted producer Dan Muckala during the early production days. Not that's a bad thing.

"The label wasn't on the same page as me and neither was Dan," Heath said recently while on tour with TobyMac. "I guess you have to find the hill that you want to die on. But they challenged me to keep writing and right now it's easy to say that I'm glad that they did but at the time ..."

He said he was so invested in some of the songs that it was hard to go back to the writing room. But he said he realized he had a team he should trust, so he listened.

Take for instance the hit song, "Your Love." The bridge was the last thing on the project Heath wrote. He kept coming back to it, feeling like it just wasn't right. And Muckala didn't think it was good enough yet either.

"Some times I just had to give in and say, 'if I have to keep writing, I'll keep writing," Heath said. "But then there were some where I decided to take stand and say, "Look, this song belongs on the record.' "

Those two songs were "Might Just Save Your Life" and "Now More than Ever".

Heath said he's never been more proud of a CD given the work that went into it, including what he said was work "relationally" with Muckala and Reunion.

"I feel like I've learned to trust them a little bit more," he said. "Not all struggles are bad struggles."

The result is an album that Jesus freak Hideout calls it a commercial "home run." Roger Gelwicks, gave the CD 3 1/2 stars (of five) and said the record comes with natural expectations.

Recognizing the success radio-friendly material has brought him thus far, this feels like the natural next step in Heath's career for it to continue to thrive and sell records. As a result, this isn't a boundary-breaking release, but it's far from a miss.

John Brandon at Christianity Today is a little less kind. He writes "... the album is front-loaded with sure-fire radio hits and thoughtful lyrical content, [but] Leaving Eden leaves a bit to be desired." He gave the CD three stars.

Heath's spring is filled with tour dates. Right now he is out with arguably one of the biggest names in Christian music, TobyMac on the Winter Wonderslam Tour.   From there Heath will be doing a bit of headlining, followed by gigs with MercyMe.

- Producer/Writer

Filed under: Christianity • Culture & Science • Music

soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. Lala

    Dear Dana:Thanks for asking an exlermety good question. I agree with you that offering 2, or more, incentives from one page is an unsatisfactory conclusion.One approach, the one I'm currently working on, is to provide a way for website visitors to self-select the characteristics that best reflects their needs and interests on the home page, and create a landing page for each market segment. If you go to Published & Profitable's , for example, you'll see the question, Where are you in the writing process? followed by a bullet list with 3 options: Explorer, Emerging Author, or Published Author. At present, these are just bullet points. I'm currently writing the copy for the landing pages related to each option. Within a few days, the words you see in bold will become links to separate landing pages with content that addresses each category. Soon, there will be separate incentives for each category. Let me know what you think of this, and if this might be the solution you're looking for. Thank you, again, for sharing such a good question.Roger

    October 8, 2012 at 12:21 am |
  2. A

    Of course there is some aithiest on here thats trying to bring it down, well sorry your jobless and out of work, sorry I dont have time to ridicule your petty attempt, I have to go get an education. Suggest you do to. Denying a God is like denying is like denying that someone created microsoft

    February 14, 2011 at 8:42 am |
  3. David Johnson

    There is always so much money to be made off Jesus, isn't there?

    Worshiping Christ is more of a business than it is a religion. This is especially true of the Evangelicals.

    Note all the Televangelists raking in money. All are Evangelicals.

    Anybody for the Prosperity Gospel? Seed Faith?

    As a business, it should be taxed. And regulated. Don't commercials have to prove their product is real and that they work?

    Cheers!

    February 10, 2011 at 8:26 pm |
  4. W247

    Love his music! Praise the Lord!

    February 9, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  5. WishI

    had the ability to write music. I'd probably try to do Shawn McDonald blended with Hiromi.

    February 9, 2011 at 10:15 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.