Country singer/songwriter/guitarist Craig Bickhardt was born in Pennsylvania and got his big break when he wrote and sang two songs on the soundtrack to the 1983 film “Tender Mercies.” That prompted a move to Nashville, where he began playing sessions, starting with background vocals on Reba McEntire’s 1984 album “My Kind of Country,” and pitching his songs. As is usual in Nashville, most of those songs were collaborations with other writers.
“That’s How You Know When Love’s Right,” written with Wendy Waldman, was a Top Ten country hit for Nicolette Larson with Steve Wariner in 1986. In 1987, Bickhardt wrote two country Top Fives, “You’re the Power” (with F.C. Collins) for Kathy Mattea and the chart-topper “I Know Where I’m Going” (with Brent Maher and Don Schlitz) for The Judds.