The Best Music You’ve Never Heard

paulPEPPAS_iTunes-LogoThe Fieldhouse Artist of the Month for July is paulPEPPAS, chosen by our fans in the first ever “You Choose June” event!

Originally from Washington DC and now living in Venice, CA, paulPEPPAS musical journey started at an early age.

Absolutely no one in my family has any kind of musical background. I come from a long line of Architects and Interior Designers. I like to think of myself as less of a black sheep and more of a version 2.0 – the first of a future line of music creators not 3 dimensional space decorators! I grew up around this instinct for organizing elements; color, texture, light, space. I absorbed this passion but my instinct was to apply this sense to sound. I credit my Mother who is til this day a fantastic Interior Designer. Instead of sitting me in front of the TV, she would lay out Tupperware containers on the floor in a semi-circle, hand me two wooden spoons, and encourage me to pound away! I think back now about how much that encouraged me to embrace my inner world as an acceptable “reality” to spend time absorbed in. That I could have this safe space to imagine anything without limitations and then work to bring that into the external world. – paulPEPPAS
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From there he received a scholarship to study Music Theory and Composition at the University of Miami School of Music. Continuing his studies, he spent an entire year at the Hochschule fur Musik in Vienna, Austria where he focused on the symphonic works of Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven.

paulPEPPAS co-founded the band Virigina Coalition (VACO), for which he has been a devoted keyboardist and songwriter for over 15 years. VACO has recorded 6 studio albums, as well as 2 live records. The band has shared the stage with acts such as Maroon 5, John Mayer, Black Eyed Peas, and many more! Aside from the band, he also spent 3 years teaching as the Music Director of The School of Rock in Washington, DC, before heading to Venice, CA to pursure his solo writing efforts.

“Together” was recently featured on the Fieldhouse Music June 2013 Sampler and given to fans during “You Choose June.” paulPEPPAS shares with us his experience writing & recording this fan favorite:

The story of this song, from its creation to the lyric to the spirit behind it, is about reaching out and connecting in a meaningful way to everything around us. To use the strength of these bonds to give us the energy to imagine and manifest a more brilliant world. It is overwhelmingly hopeful, positive, and full of belief in our better selves.

“together” is a co-write with the lead vocalist Andy Poliakoff from Virginia Coalition. He’s a brilliant, thoughtful guy with an incredibly interesting vocal sound. He is just great to write with because his perspective is so unique. We were messing around with the piano riff that starts the song, we’d actually had that for awhile, and we had this mutual feeling that the two of us wanted to come together and say something positive about putting aside self, even when you hold passionate beliefs, in an effort to create something beautiful. Almost a commentary that the most beautiful things humankind creates have happened or can happen when we do so. It can be as seemingly small as putting aside yourself to create a more loving relationship or even something larger like a moon shot! It is being fascinated by all of the beauty in the world from the smallest insignificant thing to the largest. Being steeped in that wonder gives us that feeling that “we could…” do anything, and that frame of my mind is a magical place to operate from.

I ended up doing most of the recording with recording/producing “yoda” Mitch Easter down at his Fidelitorium Recording Studios in NC. The room there is unbelievably gorgeous. Full of vintage gear, kitsch, and oozing with vibe! He was PERFECT for the job as we shared this mutual love for Jeff Lynn and ELO. I played most everything so we simply built the track instrument by instrument starting with this great upright piano he has. The whole song is built around that piano part. I’ve recorded both ways, all live and the bottom up approach, but the latter proved to be the best for this track as it allowed for really thoughtful layering and experimentation. Maybe it takes some of the mystique out of it but sometimes you have no idea what sounds and parts are going to work. But it’s a great deal of fun to throw all manner of things at the wall with no pressure to see what sticks. And again that’s where Mitch is brilliant. He’s incredibly patient and believes so much in taking time and creating an environment where you are free to try things out. For example I had no idea we were going to layer a distorted electric harpsichord on top of the piano but we heard it and it worked. The trick then is really to experiment but have the sense to identify something when you have it and keep it! And so hell yeah, distort the harpsichord homes! – paulPEPPAS

Enjoy a FREE Download of “Ambrosia” this month!

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