Paolo Pedana b.k.a. Paul Pedana was born on in a small town called Umbertide, in the vicinity of Perugia, Italy. At the tender age of 6 he began to play the piano. By the age of twelve he had picked up both the guitar and the drums and had started his first band. At 14 he composed an 11 track symphonic music album created on various synthesizers and other virtual instruments. The album even impressed the great composer Giampiero Reverberi.
Paul’s momentum was abruptly cut short by a tragic accident at the age of 16, when he was run-over by a bus in front of his high school. Despite the odds he made a painful and miraculous recovery, undergoing multiple surgeries and medical treatments across long periods of time. His near death experience brought with it a strong sense of awakening and lust for life, which later led Paul to journey to the USA to live with the Native American tribe of the “Lakota”. A voyage which stayed with him and echoes through his music.
After previously achieving success as the drummer and main songwriter for the band Anthropos, in January 2015 Paul Pedana decided to pursue a solo project in an attempt to express a different musical affinity to his previous work with the band. The project quickly grew into a passion of Paul’s and he immediately released two singles and supporting videos, showcasing his new sound which drastically departed from his previous musical genre.
The tracks in question are “Free” and “I’m not afraid”. These songs hit me emotionally the first time I heard them. There is something unique, beautiful, and enigmatic about Paul Pedana’s songwriting and singing. “Free” captures those qualities perfectly. Pedana’s use of strings in this song is so perfect and intertwined lavishly with the melody and other instruments. The track starts out simple with Pedana’s superbly soulful voice and an acoustic guitar, then blows up into a lush string arrangement with wonderful guitar and keyboard work all the way through. Paul Pedana sounds like he really cares about how we listen to his songs.
The production on his songs is tremendous, the intense layering of sounds and the clarity of his far-ranching vocals is absolutely sublime. And even when he uses a simpler piano-driven arrangement as on “I’m not afraid”, the orchestration of the strings and voice, are exquisitely executed, with each single note building on the emotion of the song, until it reaches a majestic, anthemic sweep.
The most amazing aspect of Paul Pedana’s compositions is how it spiritually moves the listener. It takes one on a journey of life, love, and death, with each song moving in its own way. Containing lush, soaring melodies and propulsive guitars and keyboards, set against vital string arrangements held in tight rhythmic rein, Pedana’s musical talent percolates and seethes with emotion. I truly can’t begin to recommend Paul Pedana enough. Please consider this artist as your top purchase this year.