Prism – Green – 1988

Usually I bash Chris Harris and Mark Heimermann and their Prism projects but not this time. As I’ve been processing CCM artist’s Christmas albums this week more and more of them sounded like the record company recorded a bunch of Christmas carol arrangements and then invited a CCM artist in to sing them. None of these albums had a feel of the artist and quite frankly the arrangements sound like any album I could buy at Walmart for 99ยข in December. But not this album. Chris and Mark actually sat down and wrote some excellent arrangements for these tracks and did some great vocals. I have no idea who else was involved with this project but it is great as far as Christmas albums go. Many of these tracks will go on my Christmas playlist this year.

1 – Joy To The World – 3:41
2 – O Holy Night – 4:05
3 – Snowdrift / Silent Night – 5:09
4 – White Christmas – 4:22
5 – It Came Upon A Midnight Clear – 2:01
6 – Away In A Manager – 4:33
7 – O Come All Ye Faithful – 4:52
8 – The First Noel – 3:25
9 – Angels We Have Heard On High – 3:16
10 – Only Love (Will Last Forever) – 4:09

Prism – Red – 1988

This is the final album in the Prism series. I’ll be honest I still don’t understand what the project was really all about. Again there are children on the cover of the album that have nothing to do with the album. I truly believe the original idea was Kidz Bop idea but in the end it just turned into Chris Harris and Mark Heimermann doing an album. I actually find it a bit disingenuous to have a bunch of kids on the album cover when they have nothing to do with the album. Very strange. Now that aside these were a series of very successful albums because they are very good. These guys knew how to make music and I am totally baffled at why they didn’t want to do it using their own names. Thy did have First Call do the track “If You’re Happy And You Know It”. Bottom line is I really like the whole project, the results were fantastic I’m just not sure the path they took to get there.

1 – Amazing Grace – 3:37
2 – Kum-Ba-Yah – 4:49
3 – He’s Got The Whole World In His Hands – 4:54
4 – If You’re Happy And You Know It/I’m Happy Today – 2:25
5 – Love Him In The Morning – 3:39
6 – Seek Ye First – 3:15
7 – Sure Shot – 3:48
8 – Count Your Many Blessings/Can You Count The Stars – 3:01
9 – Big Enough – 3:43
10 – The Lord Bless You And Keep You – 2:03

Prism – Yellow – 1987

Chris Harris and Mark Heimermann are back with the kids of Prism. Their first album, “Blue”, was a great success so they returned to the studio to try the same formula again. This time the budget must have increased as we hear more musical backing and two known CCM stars, Marti McCall, and Gary Chapman join in. The album again features several traditional Sunday School/Campfire songs. There is also a version of Amy Grant’s & Michael W. Smith’s duet “Friends”. The strangest track is an instrumental from Heimermann that would have made Harold Faltemeyer proud. I say strange because I wouldn’t expect an original instrumental composition on a Kidz Bop kind of album. This was usually considered the best of the Prism projects and again was very well received by CCM radio stations. It had 3 singles, Pass It On made it to #12, Anywhere With Jesus to #14, and Sweet, Sweet Spirit made it to #25. So if you’re in the mood for some Kidz Bop, and a synth instrumental, give this album a listen.

1 – Pass It On – 3:51
2 – Have You Seen Jesus My Lord – 3:01
3 – Sweet, Sweet Spirit – 3:17
4 – A Common Love – 4:01
5 – Sing And Be Happy – 3:20
6 – Anywhere With Jesus – 3:24
7 – I’ve Got The Joy, Joy, Joy (Down In My Heart) – 3:03
8 – Gizmo – 2:14
9 – Friends ’88 – 2:27
10 – We Will Always Be With The Lord – 4:45

Doris Akers – Songwriter
Reed Arvin – Synclavier Assistance
Joe Baldridge – Synclavier Assistance
Brown Bannister – Songwriter
Lisa Bevill – Vocals
Michael Blanton – Executive Producer
Charles F. Brown – Songwriter
Gary Chapman – Vocals
George W. Cooke – Songwriter
Mark Douthit – Saxophone
John Fischer – Songwriter
Lynn Fuston – Engineer, Mixed
Randy Garmon – Assistant Engineer
Dan Harrell – Executive Producer
Chris Harris – Producer, Arrangements, Vocals
Mark Heimermann – Producer, Songwriter, Arrangements, Keyboards, Vocals
James Hollihan – Guitar
Gary Janney – Vocals
Kurt Kaiser – Songwriter
William J. Kirkpatrick – Songwriter
Gary Lunn – Drum Programming, Bass
Marty McCall – Vocals
Donna McElroy – Vocals
Terry McMillan – Harmonica
Jerry McPherson – Guitar
Jeff Moseley – Executive Producer
Jessie B. Pounds – Songwriter
Benny Quin – Mastered
Chris Rodriguez – Background Vocals
Ted Silva – Songwriter
Deborah D. Smith – Songwriter
Michael W. Smith – Songwriter
Chris Thomason – Assistant Engineer
Daniel B. Towner – Songwriter

Prism – Blue – 1986

I have to admit I completely missed this one in the 80’s but I assume the cover would have made me skip right by this one. If I had to describe this one it would sort of be the Christian version of Kidz Bop but not really. The album consist mainly of cover versions of vacation bible school and campfire songs we all know though they are very popped up. This project was the brain child of Chris Harris and Mark Heimermann with some studio musicians and some kids. Strangely I can’t find any record of who the kids were. There are two original songs on the album penned by Heimermann. “Heads or Tails” and “Selah.” Both have a fun 80’s pop sound and are actually pretty good. Many of you grew up with this series of albums so we get a lot of requests for the entire series. We’re here to please so we will post them all.

1 – Jesus Loves Me – 1:54
2 – This Little Light Of Mine – 3:07
3 – This Is The Day – 3:24
4 – Heads Or Tails – 3:38
5 – Stand Up – 3:12
6 – Wise Man – 3:13
7 – Selah – 2:35
8 – Jesus Loves The Little Children – 2:55
9 – My Prayer – 4:15
10 – Into My Heart – 2:40