Utah pianist’s album of hymns tops new age Billboard chart

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SALT LAKE CITY – Contemporary jazz pianist and Utah native Paul Cardall has done it again: His 15th album, 40 hymns for Forty Days, has hit No. 1 on the top of the new age albums Billboard chart.

“It's amazing because it basically shows that the music has transcended boundaries and is reaching people of other faiths,” Cardall said of the album's success.

Cardall said the themes in his 15th album are similar to his second album--the songs are Christian-based hymns.

“My goal and hope is that the music can be a tool to help people rediscover or discover a relationship with a loving God,” he said.

Cardall received a heart transplant about five ago after years of suffering from a heart defect.

"I had surgery when I was 13, 14--five years ago I had a heart transplant," he said. "So it's something that's always a part of my life, in and out of the hospital, but I think that's where the depth of my music comes from is these experiences of struggling."

He talked about how, when he was younger, he found comfort composing music.

“The piano became my, kind of like my Xbox as a teenager, I was just playing it all the time, creating songs and then trying to play for whoever would listen,” he said.

Cardall said he's grateful so many people are listening to his music.

"I'm just very grateful for the people who have found my music, the people that are yet to find the music because, ultimately, my whole goal is to help people feel God's love and that's the power of music, is essentially, that's what it can do for us,” he said.

Cardall is planning an hour-long, live-streaming event on his Facebook page on May 7 for International Day of Prayer. He said he’s inviting the public to tune in on his Facebook page. He said he'll have a group of musicians and religious leaders of all faiths participating in the event.