has completely revamped her website, which includes new features, such as social networking where you can get in touch with other fans, uploading videos, pictures and news!
To help things get kicked off, Paula is having a video contest for her hot new song, 'When It Was Me.' Paula provides you with her performance of the song and has left strategically-placed blank spaces throughout the length of the track. It is your challenge to fill in these empty spaces with visuals that help Paula tell the story of the song. Click this link
for more details! 'When It Was Me' is currently burning up the airwaves, with it being one of the most added songs on rhythm radio, beating out Ciara
, Mike Jones
Can dreams come true? Ask Paula DeAnda, the 16-year-old Corpus Christi resident who - in short order - found herself with a rhythm radio hit that made its way on to Billboard's charts (as a result of constant airplay throughout the South West), followed by a live audition in front of music industry legend Clive Davis who signed her on the spot! "I was shocked," says the young singer/songwriter. "I sang for Steve Ferrera, Senior VP, A&R at Arista on a Thursday morning after the label heard my record 'Doing Too Much' was getting airplay and was on the charts. Steve asked me to come back later that day to perform for Clive Davis who offered me a deal right there at my audition, and I had a signed contract by Friday evening." When it sank in that she had been signed by one of the industry's most renowned executives, Paula said "it was just as well I didn't know everything he'd done...I would have probably been even more nervous!"
That audition would prove to be a turning point: Paula sang the Spanish language song "Amor Como Tu" along with the R&B/pop flavored "Doing Too Much" and "Good Girl," two songs which displayed her talent as not just a young singer with a powerhouse voice but as a songwriter in her own right. "I may not have lived through all the things I write about, but I do have friends who have had different experiences which I can put into my songs when I write," Paula explains.
Her signing to Arista is just the latest in a series of events that have catapulted the young lady with the big voice from singing at local parties in San Angelo, Texas to becoming the latest chartmaker to emerge from the burgeoning Corpus Christi music scene.
Speaking about her early musical influences, Paula recalls that Selena was one of the musical artists - along with Shania Twain
and LeAnn Rimes
- whose songs she would sing at family gatherings in San Angelo. "Selena has always been an inspiration to me because of what kind of person she was. She sang, she wrote, she performed and she remained down-to-earth and close to her family. There really hasn't been anyone who has had her charisma and talent. I remember singing with a hairbrush as my microphone," Paula laughs. "My cousins would be my dancers and I sang songs in English and Spanish. Encouraged by her family who recognized her musicality, Paula began taking piano lessons, performing at weddings and local charity events. "I started to get feedback from the people I sang to. They told me my singing really touched them," she says. "I never realized my music could have that effect. People would tell me I had a God-given blessing." DeAnda family's moved from San Angelo, TX to Corpus Christi, TX in 2002 to continue Paula's music journey since Corpus Christi is known as a hub for new musical talent.
During the next few years, Paula continued working with various musicians and producers in the area. As word spread, Paula met her current manager Ed Ocanas of E.D.O. Entertainment who helped position Paula as the opening act for superstars Nelly, Akon, former Kumbia Kings
member Frankie J
and rap star Baby Bash
and singing at the famed Corpus Christi Bayfest in 2005. "At the shows, I sang the first song I'd written, 'What Would It Take' and then I recorded it," Paula recalls. Released on a local independent label, the song began to get local airplay but it was another song, "Doing Too Much," co-written with Baby Bash (who is also featured on the track), that proved a turning point. Bash and Paula's manager introduced her to producer Happy Perez, another integral force in the increasingly popular Corpus Christi-based radio scene, who cut the hypnotic track at a local studio in the city.
"Doing Too Much" started getting local airplay at the start of 2006 and by the time Paula auditioned for Clive Davis, the song had made enough 'noise' to enter Billboard's charts. In the wake of its success, Paula began working on her debut album in the spring of 2006, while attending high school in Corpus Christi. "For sure, I'm going to be doing songs in Spanish and English, because I still know where I came from and I want to stay true to my roots," says Paula, who says her current favorite artists include labelmate Alicia Keys
and Keyshia Cole
. "I will definitely be writing songs for the record and basically, I want to have songs that tell stories and have a message in them."
Paula's combination of talent along with the encouragement of friends and the support of family is paying off as "Doing Too Much" continues its chart climb. As she busies herself with recording her first album, the smiling young singer/songwriter says that away from the studio and the stage, she's "a typical teen who enjoys going to movies, attending dance classes, watching sports and, of course, shopping!" - says: "I'm learning to balance everything: my career is my main focus but I know that it's important to continue my education, hang out with my friends and spend time with my family. But of course, I'm very excited about what's happening with my music! Getting the record deal, having a song on the radio…I'm still taking everything in…and I know this is just the beginning…"
Check Out 'When It Was Me': Quicktime
| Windows Media
(Streaming audio and/or video links may expire without notice)