By 1966, his talent and networking earned him a spot in the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. His stint was short, but his songs enjoyed a longer impact, making their way onto their first two albums. After landing a publishing deal, Browne got songs on other artists' albums, as well.
A move to New York City in 1967 found him living in Greenwich Village, backing Tim Buckley, and collaborating with Nico on Chelsea Girl. Browne crossed back to L.A. the following year, went back on the folk club circuit, and, eventually, got the Byrds and Linda Ronstadt to record his songs.
Jackson's demo was worthy enough to get a deal with Asylum Records in 1971 with his self-titled debut emerging the following spring. “Doctor My Eyes” became Browne's first Top 10 hit and “Take It Easy” – which he co-authored with Glenn Frey for the Eagles – also became a smash. Other cuts from his album, like "Rock Me on the Water" and "Jamaica Say You Will," eventually became classics, as well.
Browne followed that set in 1973 with For Everyman, working closely with David Lindley for the first of many collaborations. The next year came Late for the Sky which made its way up to number 14 and sold enough copies to go gold.
The Pretender dropped in late 1976 and cracked the Top 10 on its way to selling more than a million units. While touring in support of The Pretender, Browne managed to lay down the tracks for 1977's Running on Empty. The effort yielded hits in the title track and "Stay/The Load-Out" while topping out at number three on the album chart.
Continuing his wave, 1980's Hold Out managing to make it to number one. Two years later, Browne enjoyed his biggest hit single (at number seven) with “Somebody's Baby” off the Fast Times at Ridgemont High soundtrack.
His next set, Lawyers in Love, contained lyrical themes that reflected his outspoken political activism. Still, the singles for "Lawyers in Love," "Tender Is the Night," and "For a Rocker" all did very well for Browne. In 1986, Lives in the Balance failed to spawn any hits, but it still went gold thanks to its stern look at President Ronald Reagan's time in office.
Browne's socially conscious writing filled 1989's World in Motion – his first to not sell gold – while his activism took over his life for a few years. It wouldn't be until 1993 that I'm Alive would be released and go gold.
More new projects came in 1996 (Looking East) and 2002 (The Naked Ride Home). During these years, Browne continued to tour on a fairly consistent basis. Two years later, as Browne found his way into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, The Very Best of Jackson Brown was issued.
Following a solo tour, the Solo Acoustic, Vol. 1 set dropped in 2005 with Solo Acoustic, Vol. 2 coming in 2008. That same year, Time the Conqueror appeared while Love Is Strange made its way out in 2010.