South Australian country/folk/Americana artist Paul Standing recently released an intimate album, The More I Give, a musical chronicle of her own life and musical journey.
Paula explains, “I worked with multiple songwriters, but the underlying theme was a brief history of me. Who I am, where I came from and where I am heading. Yet still very relatable to the listener.”
She goes on to add, “I followed a musical path set for me with magical parties around the piano from a very young age. A chance meeting with folk artist Lou Bradley pushed my musical journey higher than I thought possible. Songs inspired by the amazing people I call my family – mother, husband, sons, they gave me the best stories.”
Along with Paula, musicians appearing on the album include Rod McCormack (guitars, banjo, Papoose, Dobro, Mandolin, tenor guitar, keyboards, percussion, backing vocals), Jeff McCormack (bass), Jeff Taylor (Mandolin, violin), and Pat Crowley (piano, accordion) on “Hiding Out In Tuscany.”
Encompassing 10-tracks, The More I Give begins with “Call It Home,” a gorgeous, elegant folk song rolling out on glistening acoustic guitars riding a mid-tempo rhythm. Rippling layers of soft coloration imbue the tune with lustrous, creamy textures as Paula’s dulcet voice provides warm, velvety timbres.
Entry points include “Hiding Out In Tuscany,” permeated by gentle flavors of country and Americana. Gentle and exquisite, Paula’s twangy-lite voice infuses the lyrics with evocative hues.
“And maybe there’s a part of me / That’s hiding out in Tuscany / If I don’t go, I’ll never know I could / Sometimes the urge for going means you should.”
“I’d Go Back Again” pushes out vibrant layers of color, filling the song with delicious savors of nostalgia, while Paula narrates growing up surrounded by music. “Better Not To Know” travels on dark, ominous colors rife with swampy folk tones.
A personal favorite, “Heaven On Earth” features sparkling instruments emanating affectionate aromas. On this track, Paula’s tones take on luminous filaments of plush opulence. The final track, “Doing Fine,” reveals melancholic hues topped by Paula’s redolent vocals, relating poignant heartache, while pretending to be fine.
“I told everyone, I’m doing fine / Just like to have a little wine / One or two bottles / It ain’t no crime / Long as you all know / I’m doing fine.”
The More I Give is a gem of an album, polished with luscious leitmotifs and the wondrous vocal expression of Paula Standing.