By the Way was lauded by critics as a departure from the band's previous styles, and is recognized for the melodic and subdued emotions given by the Chili Peppers. Guitarist John Frusciante is credited with writing most of the album's melodies, backing vocal arrangements, bass lines and guitar progressions, therefore changing the direction of the recording dramatically: "his warm, understated guitar work and his doo-wop style vocal harmonies are king this time around."By the Way contained very little of the signature punk-funk fusion the band had become known for playing. Frusciante has stated that writing "By the Way [was] one of the happiest times in my life." The album went on to sell more than eight million copies worldwide.