Interview with Helena Paul
If you come to Alberts often, you probably already know why we love her so much, but we wanted to take a moment to introduce Helena Paul to you, in more depth.
She is a super-talented woman with a mind blowing voice and a presence on stage that is contagious, entertaining and overall captivating.
She can own any song and effortlessly make you fall in love with it.
Across her prolific career, Helena sang and recorded with several big bands as well as fronting a gospel choir. Also she got a publishing deal with Warner Chappell in Hamburg and had several European and state side hits with dance floor acts.
She worked with chart topping acts in Germany so had many TV appearances and worked with many producers of acts like The Back Street Boys, The Weather Girls, Jam & Spoon, Xavier Naidoo, Hathaway.... and many more.
In the UK she toured with Wet Wet Wet and recorded at Peter Gabriels studio in Box in Bath.
But who is the person behind the microphone, who amuses our customers over and over again during her live performances?
We had a little chat with her, where she told us a bit about herself.
We invite you to get to know her a little bit more!
So Helena, when did you discover you passion for singing?
I have always sung. As a child I played piano and wrote my own songs and got to perform quite regularly in theatre shows and for family parties. When I was 16 I had my very first band and started gigging in clubs and bars in London. Music is in my blood and I love to sing. I never took lessons and am very blessed that it's a natural talent.
Which musicians and songwriters have been the greatest influence?
I grew up listening to Earth Wind and Fire. Stylistics. Chaka Khan and the whole American soul and R&B music. Also I had a huge influence from reggae and lovers rock. The jazz influences came much later on in my early 20s when I realised I had a natural aptitude to jazz music and I started hanging out in Ronnie Scott's and other jazz clubs in London, soon after forming my own bands and gigging at these prestigious venues including Ronnie Scott's, Pizza On The Park, Smolenskys on the Strand, Dover Street Wine bar and I also had a band who performed every Friday and Saturday night at Xenon in the heart of Piccadilly. I perfected my voice copying Barbara Streisand, Chaka and all the great soul singers like Oleta Adams.... too many to mention....! When I moved to Germany in the 90s I was living amongst many Americans and began to learn even more about gospel music, and groups like Take Six etc etc....
I'm sure you got the chance to meet many talented musicians and all kinds of artists during this time, can you tell us a nice memory you have from early years in your career?
Freddy Mercury used to be a regular visitor amongst many other celebs at Xenon where I Sang in London... I went with him to watch his boyfriend actor Peter Straker in Blues In The Night at the Piccadilly theatre one evening which was wonderful!
What kind of music do you sing at Alberts?
At Alberts my repertoire spans a wide range from the American Song Book all the way through to modern day. I tend to choose my song selection spontaneously and by judging the people sat in front of me, their ages and their reactions to the songs as I sing them. Therefore I never know exactly what I will sing each gig and I enjoy the interaction and the challenge to please each individual audience. Because I love to sing so many different styles of music from so many genre it's difficult to pin point exactly what my style is. I love to honour the greats of the music industry but don't try to blind the listening audience with science by being too technical- even though I could be if challenged!
What is you favourite part of Sundays performances?
I love to sing at Alberts because the people are always so receptive and over the years I have got to know many of the regular clients who tell me that they come especially when I'm singing. So every part of my performance there is my favourite.
-More dates to be announced.-