paula toledo

paula toledo

BandPopRock

Melancholy shadowing optimism. Jangly guitars to atmospheric dreamy sounds. Paula’s melodic pop songs have been described as "a young Stevie Nicks meets Aimee Mann". Stay Awhile was co-produced by Paula and Jonathan Anderson and mixed by David Odlum (Josh Ritter, The Frames).

Biography

Jangly guitars to atmospheric sounds. Paula Toledo's dreamy, melodic pop/folk songs weave through life’s optimistic restlessness while capturing the innocence of its ripened discoveries.

Just short of 2 months after releasing her debut album, 'Stay Awhile' was selected by CBC Radio One's 'Freestyle' program as album of the week. Nationally broadcast on radio and world-wide via the internet, 'Stay Awhile' has found its home with music lovers who are calling it 'an unassuming gem of an album' (sceneandheard.com), 'truly affecting' (CKUT), 'timeless....honest, pure and passionate' (Hallandsposten Daily).

One may call it happenstance that only four years prior, after reaching a state of disillusionment in her life, she would be called back into the world of music & travel to France on more than one occasion. "It was a real turning point in my life. I literally quit my desk-job in Tourism with nothing else waiting in the wings. I felt so lifeless. So..." she laughs, "I took to painting my walls." During the menial task of painting, Paula's voice was heard through the walls of her apartment by neighbors who happened to be French singer/songwriters. In search for a back-up singer, they were intrigued and when they learned that Paula also spoke French, they enlisted her for their tour of France.

One could say that happenstance and Paula would once again meet, recently to finish recording & mixing her debut album 'Stay Awhile' in France with Irish producer David Odlum (The Frames, Josh Ritter, Gemma Hayes)... but upon closer inspection, one will notice a singer/songwriter who is drawn to discovering and creating all things new. It is Paula's honest & child-like love of creating that continues to draw people to Paula's music.

With just a five song EP released, music supervisors have licensed Paula's songs for three consecutive seasons of '15/Love' (YTV in Cda./U.S. & in France on France 2), 'Secret Lives' (LifetimeTV in Cda./U.S. & feature film in theatres in Asia and Europe), 'Missing' (LifetimeTV in Cda. U.S.) and two consecutive seasons of 'Renegadepress.com' (Global in Cda.). When her 5 song EP found its way into the hands of another musician who was also the Creative Director for Larrivée Guitars, he asked Paula to appear in a Larrivée Guitar Ad and featured her in a full colour, double-page ad in several music magazines; 'Acoustic Guitar', 'Canadian Musician', 'Women Who Rock', 'Inside Connection' and 'Rockr Grl'. The magazine coverage, which spanned across North America, led readers to her website and spawned on-line purchases for her EP.

Growing up in Montreal, as the second to youngest of six children, at the age of ten when Paula’s parents told her they couldn’t afford guitar lessons, she struck a deal with her musical older sister – guitar and singing lessons in exchange for her maid services to keep her sister’s bedroom clean. Paula studied the classic chord progressions of Beatles’ tunes, the tight harmonies of Simon & Garfunkel, the warm and husky timber of a young Stevie Nicks and beautiful melodies of Kate Bush. As soon as she could, an under-aged Paula would find her own way and sneak into Montreal bars as the lead singer of an alternative-ska band. When the band broke up, Paula headed to Vancouver to give academia a try. Quickly becoming restless in her sophomore year, she impulsively hopped on a plane on a study exchange in Barcelona, Spain. Yearning to play music, Paula borrowed guitars hanging from the ceiling of a sangria bar so that she could sing and play for locals.

With the same type of impulsiveness & focused learn-by-doing attitude that landed her in Spain, Paula set out to record and co-produce her album with Jonathan Anderson (Jack Harlan, Stabilo, Maplewood Lane, Hinterland).

Prior to beginning her album, Paula would meet Irish producer, David Odlum at a show in Seattle where he was performing. Being a big fan of his music, Paula didn't want to leave without passing on her appreciation...so she passed on her thanks and left the band a copy of her EP. Months later, David would drop her an email, requesting a replacement copy of her EP, which had been unfortunately tucked away in his lost luggage.

When it came time to mix the album, Paula sent David a note, along with some rough mixes, asking him if he would be interested in working together to complete the album. David agreed but when scheduling challenges made it difficult to work in Vancouver, Paula and David devised a resourceful Plan B which unexpectedly landed her & Jonathan in a 19th century farmhouse & barn in rural France, otherwise known as Black Box Studios.

In her continued Do-It-Yourself approach, Paula finished her debut cd 'Stay Awhile' and has released it on her label, Holy Toledo Records in the spring of 2006.

Lyrics

Fly Away

Written By: Paula Toledo

Sink your teeth into it
Right down to the bone
May take a crash to prove it
Your stale dreams will only make you grow old

They say he let you down
And now you’ve gone aground
You’ve got your head buried in the sand

I know you can taste it
You’re not too far away

And isn’t it better to be free
Than to live with a bad guarantee
Isn’t it better to be stained?
Than to live in a warped fairytale
So fly away, fly away, fly away

They say he let you down
And now you’ve gone aground
You’ve got your head buried in the sand
They say he let you down and now you’ve gone aground
You’re not doing much to be found
They say he let you down
And now you’ve gone aground
You’ve got your head buried in the sand
They say he let you down and now you’ve gone aground
You’re not doing much to be much to be much

And isn’t it better to be free
Than to live with a bad guarantee
Isn’t it better to be stained?
Than to live in a warped fairytale
So fly away, fly away, fly away

Joan

Written By: Paula Toledo

Joan, do I sense some doubt?
Joan, you don’t have to figure it all out
Are you watching the traffic whizzin’ on by?
While you’re frozen in the concrete,
Trying to make it out before it dries
Is this big city tearing you inside out?

You try so hard to relax
But in the back of your mind you know that
Winners can’t finish last

I’d love you to stay wide eyed
You’re the last of the great & genuine kind
I’d love to stay wide eyed
With petals falling from your hair
You’re so pretty when you’re wild

Joan, are you still in your room?
Joan, did the walls cave in and crush you so you couldn’t move?
Are you silenced by the static going on in your head
While you’re missing the frequency
So you turn it off and lay still instead
Are you paralyzed by what you can’t prove?

You try so hard to relax
But in the back of your mind you know that
You can’t get off this beaten track

Chorus

If You Leave Me Now in a Hurry

Written By: Paula Toledo

I know it’s wrong to tell you
That I’ll always love you
I know it’s wrong to tell you
That you’ll always be in my thoughts
To not yet be gone
And to hear these things
But I can’t bare the thought of you not remembering

If you leave me now in a hurry
If you leave me now I know you don’t want to go
If you leave me now, don’t you worry
I’ll do all the things
You want me to do
All those things
And I’ll make believe
You were here too

Tomorrow will come
And you may be more peaceful that you’ve ever been
I’ll wait around
And wait for all your friends to come and say their peace
It may be cruel
To go on like this
But maybe it’s true
We all fear we won’t be missed

If you leave me now in a hurry
If you leave me now I know you don’t want to go
If you leave me now, don’t you worry
I’ll do all the things
You want me to do
All those things
And I’ll make believe
You were here too

Passport

Written By: Paula Toledo

We’re stuck in Paris tonight
At Charles de Gaulle it’s quarter to nine
And the flights are way out of sight
They’re long gone
And home’s calling
But not yet…
We’ve got to spend one night
So we’ll walk by The Seine
Like lovers ought to do

But you want to leave
But I’ve your passport
And you’ve got mine
After all these years
You’ve gotta wonder how we got it right

The carousel’s in a cage
There’s not much to do on this New Year’s Day
And we’re props in a lover’s greatest stage
Inanimate, where did intimacy go…on…
Silent, chilled to the bone
And we’ll make like we’re happy
To be alone

Turn the lights on, turn the lights on
Turn the lights on, it’s me
Turn the lights on, turn the lights on,
Aren’t you happy with what you see

Discography

Full Length CD 'Stay Awhile' -
produced by Paula Toledo and Jonathan Anderson and recorded at Buena Vista Audio and Mushroom Studios in Vancouver, B.C.
with additional production and mixing by David Odlum (Josh Ritter, The Frames, Gemma Hayes) at Blackbox Studios, France.

Release date May 14, 2006

Previous 5 song EP released in 2003.

Demo Grant received by FACTOR in 2002.
Showcase Grant received by FACTOR in 2006

www.myspace.com/paulatoledo

Set List

Pride
Break it Down
Joan
Passport
Empty Pockets
Stay Awhile
Fly Away
Tell Me a Lie
Left to Stain
Atmopshere
How Long