Christien Paul
Gig Seeker Pro

Christien Paul

Toronto, Ontario, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2016 | SELF

Toronto, Ontario, Canada | SELF
Established on Jan, 2016
Band Folk Singer/Songwriter

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

This band hasn't logged any past gigs

Music

Press


BY TODD AALGAARD

Pre-show hype: Low to medium. From the court After Runnymede—a.k.a. Christien Paul, with Eliza Niemi on cello—were holding at Central, it’s hard to say if these were CMW seekers or regular followers of After Runnymede’s work. Judging from the acclaim following this act around, though, either is equally likely.

Crowd: Like an audience assembled to hear a spoken-word performance or a poetry slam. There was an 8:15 influx of the Totally Into Doing Jagr Bombs and Whooping Inappropriately During a Relatively Quiet Set crowd, but to their credit, they bailed pretty quickly once every last pair of eyes started shooting lasers at them.

Performance: Easy, casual, laid back. Paul told the full, rapt house several times that he hadn’t slept, and that he may put everyone else to sleep as a result. Not so. Beginning with a minimalist arrangement of keyboards, drum machines, and an irresistibly mournful undercurrent of cello laid down by Niemi, the first few songs played out like a soundtrack, crackling with the sort of dark intensity you could imagine haunting a Runnymede laneway after hours. The performance then shifted to the warm, acoustic tones highlighted on After Runnymede’s debut compilation. Arresting, deeply literate, and beautifully personal, the thought that kept returning is that this performance was like the musical equivalent of a good read.

Best moment: Being at Central during Saturday primetime and not shouting at a lung-busting pitch. Also, every moan of Niemi’s smooth strings.

Miscellaneous: Talking to Paul after the show, the name “After Runnymede” comes from something very familiar to everyone who lives in the Junction: the use of Runnymede as a signpost to determine your east-west bearings in the neighbourhood. This is an artist who wears Toronto proudly.

Verdict: 8.5/10 - Torontoist


BY TODD AALGAARD

Pre-show hype: Low to medium. From the court After Runnymede—a.k.a. Christien Paul, with Eliza Niemi on cello—were holding at Central, it’s hard to say if these were CMW seekers or regular followers of After Runnymede’s work. Judging from the acclaim following this act around, though, either is equally likely.

Crowd: Like an audience assembled to hear a spoken-word performance or a poetry slam. There was an 8:15 influx of the Totally Into Doing Jagr Bombs and Whooping Inappropriately During a Relatively Quiet Set crowd, but to their credit, they bailed pretty quickly once every last pair of eyes started shooting lasers at them.

Performance: Easy, casual, laid back. Paul told the full, rapt house several times that he hadn’t slept, and that he may put everyone else to sleep as a result. Not so. Beginning with a minimalist arrangement of keyboards, drum machines, and an irresistibly mournful undercurrent of cello laid down by Niemi, the first few songs played out like a soundtrack, crackling with the sort of dark intensity you could imagine haunting a Runnymede laneway after hours. The performance then shifted to the warm, acoustic tones highlighted on After Runnymede’s debut compilation. Arresting, deeply literate, and beautifully personal, the thought that kept returning is that this performance was like the musical equivalent of a good read.

Best moment: Being at Central during Saturday primetime and not shouting at a lung-busting pitch. Also, every moan of Niemi’s smooth strings.

Miscellaneous: Talking to Paul after the show, the name “After Runnymede” comes from something very familiar to everyone who lives in the Junction: the use of Runnymede as a signpost to determine your east-west bearings in the neighbourhood. This is an artist who wears Toronto proudly.

Verdict: 8.5/10 - Torontoist


I stumbled upon Christien Paul’s website for The Ongoing Music Documentary and instantly became interested in this project. After reading up on his other projects and the man behind them I was not only amazed but had some restored faith in my own generation. He is someone who really lives by his own words and is true to himself. He’s a very talnted and multifaceted artist: a singer, songwriter, business owner, filmmaker, and an actor. Not only is he very talented but he’s got that je ne sais qua about him that will make even the most cynical person notice the silver lining even if only for a moment. Get ready to enjoy this instalment of AnnieG’s Under 20 Q’s with Christien Paul.

After reading and watching the material about you and the projects your working on one word kept coming to mind—versatile. What is it you attribute this versatility to? Costs. To do it yourself is usually cheaper, even if that means investing years to studying the craft. Secondly, creative control… I have a vision and was raised to believe that “if you want it done right, you have to do it yourself”.

What I really enjoyed about reading both your blog and watching what you film (via EPKHosting and Youtube) is the importance of honesty to you. What is it that made you want to create a resource for artists that really looks out for their best interests in the way that The Ongoing Music Documentary does? Older generations would keep knowledge secret as it would empower them over others. Newer generations have come to realize that by sharing knowledge, it grows as an exponential rate. The world would be a better place if we all collaborated as opposed to try and exploit one another. When I share what I learn I often gain further insight when someone asks questions or makes comments by offering a different perspective or personal experience. There’s a book I read called “Wikinomics - How Mass Collaboration Changes Everything”. The core message of the book is that sharing prospers over ruling.

Art is never finished, only abandoned – Leonardo Da Vinci. This quote is often referenced in the explanation of how art must be released in to the world. How do you feel this idea(l) applies to the online documentary you’ve created? I guess it all comes down to “opportunity cost”… will the added effort and time be worth the return or will you miss out on another opportunity at a higher cost? What we film is a live performance that is shot in one go. We can’t stop rolling or do a new take. We are capturing the moment, we’re not producing something to sell or win an award. There comes a time where we need to realize that we are always our own worst critic. I admire the perfectionist but in my personal experience, I can keep polishing a project until the cows come home but there comes a point where you are faced with “diminishing returns”. For example, you can buy a microphone for $600 or $6000. The $6000 microphone is not going to be 10 times better… it may only be 10% better yet cost 1000% more money. That’s the law of diminishing returns, the point where the costs outweigh the return. Sometimes that extra polish will cost 1000 views of missed traffic because we were a week late with the release and the content got stale and out of sync with the times.

EPK Hosting is a group effort. Tell me how you all got together on this project and who brings what to the table? The project started with me alone drawing the attention of music enthusiasts I met in the scene or in school. A number of them were very supportive, encouraging and often offering some kind advice. I began to recognize my weaknesses and the challenges that I couldn’t face alone. I then began studying my competitors such as Truth Explosion Magazine or The Now Magazine. I looked at how their staff was structured and began to fit the talents around me to a “shoe-in position”. I started working with public relations graduates who paved the way to “media accreditation” that would open doors for both the documentary and the artists being covered. We began covering big events as opposed to your small pubs and cafes. That brought us content of established artists to cross-promote emerging artists, it put us in touch with some of the biggest promoters and record labels bringing they eyes of industry executives onto the unsigned artists we showcase on our website. In our 2nd season we brought in contributors such as photographers, cinematographers and writers to cover more ground when attending such events as “Virgin Music Festival” where there are 4 stages that are as much as kilometre apart making it nearly impossible for a single camera man to cover the entire grounds. Being that we are all volunteers, we can take on more work as a team than as individuals. We all tend to pitch in on the same posts, rather than rely on one contributor to take the pictures, shoot the video and write the review. Those tasks are now being split up to contributors who specialize in one particular craft, i.e - AnnieG


I stumbled upon Christien Paul’s website for The Ongoing Music Documentary and instantly became interested in this project. After reading up on his other projects and the man behind them I was not only amazed but had some restored faith in my own generation. He is someone who really lives by his own words and is true to himself. He’s a very talnted and multifaceted artist: a singer, songwriter, business owner, filmmaker, and an actor. Not only is he very talented but he’s got that je ne sais qua about him that will make even the most cynical person notice the silver lining even if only for a moment. Get ready to enjoy this instalment of AnnieG’s Under 20 Q’s with Christien Paul.

After reading and watching the material about you and the projects your working on one word kept coming to mind—versatile. What is it you attribute this versatility to? Costs. To do it yourself is usually cheaper, even if that means investing years to studying the craft. Secondly, creative control… I have a vision and was raised to believe that “if you want it done right, you have to do it yourself”.

What I really enjoyed about reading both your blog and watching what you film (via EPKHosting and Youtube) is the importance of honesty to you. What is it that made you want to create a resource for artists that really looks out for their best interests in the way that The Ongoing Music Documentary does? Older generations would keep knowledge secret as it would empower them over others. Newer generations have come to realize that by sharing knowledge, it grows as an exponential rate. The world would be a better place if we all collaborated as opposed to try and exploit one another. When I share what I learn I often gain further insight when someone asks questions or makes comments by offering a different perspective or personal experience. There’s a book I read called “Wikinomics - How Mass Collaboration Changes Everything”. The core message of the book is that sharing prospers over ruling.

Art is never finished, only abandoned – Leonardo Da Vinci. This quote is often referenced in the explanation of how art must be released in to the world. How do you feel this idea(l) applies to the online documentary you’ve created? I guess it all comes down to “opportunity cost”… will the added effort and time be worth the return or will you miss out on another opportunity at a higher cost? What we film is a live performance that is shot in one go. We can’t stop rolling or do a new take. We are capturing the moment, we’re not producing something to sell or win an award. There comes a time where we need to realize that we are always our own worst critic. I admire the perfectionist but in my personal experience, I can keep polishing a project until the cows come home but there comes a point where you are faced with “diminishing returns”. For example, you can buy a microphone for $600 or $6000. The $6000 microphone is not going to be 10 times better… it may only be 10% better yet cost 1000% more money. That’s the law of diminishing returns, the point where the costs outweigh the return. Sometimes that extra polish will cost 1000 views of missed traffic because we were a week late with the release and the content got stale and out of sync with the times.

EPK Hosting is a group effort. Tell me how you all got together on this project and who brings what to the table? The project started with me alone drawing the attention of music enthusiasts I met in the scene or in school. A number of them were very supportive, encouraging and often offering some kind advice. I began to recognize my weaknesses and the challenges that I couldn’t face alone. I then began studying my competitors such as Truth Explosion Magazine or The Now Magazine. I looked at how their staff was structured and began to fit the talents around me to a “shoe-in position”. I started working with public relations graduates who paved the way to “media accreditation” that would open doors for both the documentary and the artists being covered. We began covering big events as opposed to your small pubs and cafes. That brought us content of established artists to cross-promote emerging artists, it put us in touch with some of the biggest promoters and record labels bringing they eyes of industry executives onto the unsigned artists we showcase on our website. In our 2nd season we brought in contributors such as photographers, cinematographers and writers to cover more ground when attending such events as “Virgin Music Festival” where there are 4 stages that are as much as kilometre apart making it nearly impossible for a single camera man to cover the entire grounds. Being that we are all volunteers, we can take on more work as a team than as individuals. We all tend to pitch in on the same posts, rather than rely on one contributor to take the pictures, shoot the video and write the review. Those tasks are now being split up to contributors who specialize in one particular craft, i.e - AnnieG


Discography

STANDING STILL - Released Sept 6th 2011

1) I Am Ready
2) Minou
3) Cuba
4) Do You
5) Standing Still
6) Always
7) Remember me
8) Maybe

Photos

Bio

It started with silence...

Ten days of complete silence have given Canadian singer/songwriter Christien Paul something to talk about for the rest of his life. In the spring of 2016 Christien took part in a ten day Vipassana meditation retreat, a Buddhist-based exercise in contemplation and introspection. To say it was difficult would be a massive understatement but those ten days may have changed the course of both his life and musical career.

Christien was not adverse to discipline, freelancing as a consultant, becoming accomplished in the martial arts and, at the same time, making great inroads with his music. Now, creeping into his thirties, the bar has been moved. Music is now the defining factor in his life. Possessions are being shed, passports are being updated, songs are being written and gigs are being booked. Southern Ontario is no longer the focus, the world is.

After months of planning Christien will head to France this summer to set-up a satellite music base in Europe which he hopes will gradually radiate out to other European countries. Once that base is secured it is off to the United States and Mexico to establish similar focal points. The honesty in his music is also evident in the series of Vlogs he has started which chronicle his life, you can start here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ODIyRnGpjkw

With his possessions now being able to fit in a car, as opposed to a downtown condo, Christien is setting out on a journey few musicians dare dream about. Armed with a guitar, ukulele, harmonica and a stomp box his music is equally as sparse and draws comparisons to early Ben Harper and Damien Rice.

Band Members