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Ellis Paul

Evolved Paul returns to altered Homer

The Homer (Alaska) Tribune

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

by Layton Ehmke

Folk singer/songwriter Ellis Paul embodies change.
Since his visit seven years ago, Paul toured the United States long and hard as he sang about his insight into the evolving state of the country. Paul also made some major alterations in his personal life. He became a family man. Asked how having toddler and infant daughters changes things, Paul said he got a dose of motivation.
"Yeah, it keeps me busy," he said.
Already known for his heavy tour schedule, Paul, based out of Boston, supported his growing career by "weeding out the unnecessary" things in his life. He said he became more of a weekend warrior regarding touring, as he takes long weekends to play venues rather than being gone for several weeks at a time.
He's also learned his career has grown enough that he can rely on his audiences. Whereas he used to secretly wonder whether it was all going to fall apart at any moment, Paul has let his career breathe knowing he can play enough to feed his family and his notoriety.
"I'm a storyteller. And most of my songs are about people at crossroads, generally about people going through some kind of change," he said. "You know, the songs vary from life and death to marriage and breakup, all kinds of change."
By the way, the Woody Guthrie-tattooed entertainer still loves Homer. No, really. His longest stop anywhere in four years will be his eight days in the Homer area. He returns to a Homer heavily speckled with different faces  and an Alice's Champagne Palace with new guts and a facelift.
Paul said his song with the venue's namesake simply lent itself to becoming an audience favorite wherever he plays it.
"I just fell in love with the name of the place, even down here people really cheer for it," he said.
He also said he loves Homer for its cast of characters.
"The people of Homer have a screw loose in the coolest sort of way" Paul said. "They're slightly out of their minds. It's an incredibly great place and I'm really looking forward to coming back."
He tours in support of his latest record, "Ellis Paul Essentials."
Through the years, his songs have set the tone as soundtracks for "Me, Myself and Irene", "Shallow Hal", and TV shows, "Ed" and MTV's "The Real World."
Folk musician Antje Duvekot opens the show with songs from her perception of the human experience.
Producer Neil Dorfsman, who worked with Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, the Dire Straits and Sting, also has his ears on Duvekot's music. According to her bio, Dorfsman said, "Her songs are stunning paintings of color and shade, and always generate the heat and light that real art should."

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