Internationally acclaimed pianist, producer, and film composer Paul Cardall is known for his unique, heartfelt musical style. Indeed, his fans say Cardall’s music literally soothes the heart and nurtures the soul.
Such descriptions are ironically appropriate since the artist was born with essentially half a functioning heart. That life-threatening congenital defect as well as a series of difficult surgeries and heart-related illnesses have shaped Cardall’s musical style and inspired his dozens of popular melodic compositions and arrangements.
Notably, his thirteenth studio album titled New Life debuted as the number one Billboard New Age album in February, 2011 and held a position in the top five for more than 30 weeks. Radio stations reporting to Reviews New Age recognized New Life as the best album of 2011. Music critic Michael Debbage wrote, “There is no filler on this brilliant album that has even surpassed Yanni and Enya on the Billboard New Age Chart, hitting No. 1 without any major label support or media attention - Amazing!”
The aptly named album was Cardall’s first recording after undergoing a life-saving heart transplant in September 2009. It was during the 385 days of waiting on the organ donation list that a hospitalized Cardall turned to blogging as a means of maintaining perspective while facing death and sharing his experience with family and friends. Over a million people followed the blog and own one of his albums.
Cardall believes his music “has the power to heal and inspire others.” Indeed, audiences who attend a Paul Cardall concert or speech typically come away feeling more alive and grateful for all that is good in this beautiful, yet often chaotic world. One well-known fan, Fox News Anchor Bret Baeir, who has a son with a similar congenital heart defect, has said, “Paul inspires me and my family. He exudes optimism.”
Steinway & Sons Artist Manager Jenn Gordan said, "Cardall's commitment to excellence in his artistic and professional achievements make it most appropriate that he is included on the Steinway Artist Roster, a list of the most accomplished and discriminating artists in the world."
In addition to his recording career, Cardall founded his own record Stone Angel Music in 1999. He launched cellist Steven Sharp Nelson's (The Piano Guys) recording career with the popular "Sacred Cello Series" that debuted on the Billboard Classical Charts. Cardall also helped establish acoustic guitar virtuoso Ryan Tilby with a solo career. As part of his Stone Angel Music venture, Cardall owns a prestigious recording studio in the heart of Salt Lake City featuring a large orchestral live room, piano room, drum room, iso-booth, and two mix rooms; including offices for the record label.
In addition to his music, Cardall actively promotes various causes involving congenital heart disease and speaking out about what has been described as the nation’s number one birth defect. He created an endowment at Salt Lake Community College that funds scholarships for students born with congenital disease. His long-list of awards and recognitions includes an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from the Utah State Board of Regents.
Discography & Awards
2011 New Life #1 Billboard New Age Album / #3 Top Heatseekers / #28 Independent
2009 Sacred Piano #5 Billboard New Age Album
2008 Hymns Collection #4 Billboard New Age Album
2008 Living for Eden
2007 Songs of Praise
2005 Primary Worship #12 Billboard New Age Album
2004 Christmas Hymns Vol. 1
2002 Daily Devotions
2001 Miracles: A Journey of Hope & Healing
2000 Hymns II: Piano Solos
1999 Looking Glass
1999 The Christmas Box #23 Billboard New Age Album
1997 Hymns: Piano Solos
1996: Sign of Affection
(2) Contemporary jazz pianist Paul Cardall was born April 24, 1973; suffering from a congenital heart defect, he was given only days to live but defied medical expectations, enduring a series of surgeries and illnesses throughout his childhood. Finding comfort in music, Cardall began piano lessons at age eight but quit six months later, not playing again for a decade. While in high school, however, tragedy struck when one of his best friends was killed in a car accident; a grieving Cardall spontaneously composed a musical tribute, going on to write a dozen more songs and in 1995, privately pressing an album. Around that same time he took a job playing piano at a local department store during the holiday season, and selling his record to customers; one copy of the disc made its way to author Richard Paul Evans, the writer of the best-seller The Christmas Box, who invited Cardall to write and record a musical adaptation of the book. The resulting album, also titled The Christmas Box, was released in 1997; upon signing to the Narada label, Cardall reissued the album two years later in conjunction with a new effort, The Looking Glass, which, like its predecessor, drew inspiration from Evans' novels. Cardall issued two albums in 2002, Daily Devotions and Miracles: A Journey of Hope and Healing. Stone Angel has distributed many of his releases, including 2004's Christmas Hymns, Vol. 1 and 2007's Songs of Praise. His 2009 effort Sacred Piano began his relationship with Shadow Mountain Records, the label that released his 2011 effort New Life, which debuted at number one on the Billboard New Age Charts. In 2013 he composed the music for the LDS feature film Ephraim's Rescue. ~ Jason Ankeny, Rovi