A few years after graduating from Berklee College of Music (where she studied jazz singing and was a member of the gospel choir),
Paula, a Rockport, Massachusetts native, signed with Imago Records. Shortly afterward, she was invited by Peter Gabriel to perform
on his 1992-93 world tour, which was followed by their release of '94s Harbinger that followed. Despite her exposure to various
music and world-renowned artists, Paula maintains that her greatest influence has been her family. " They taught me the single
most important life philosophy: music is Meant to be self-made, to be experienced directly. We would sing harmonies in the car–my
father sang bass and I sang alto", she recalls. "That’s probably how it will be when I have kids. They made me realize
that music is something you can create everyday, but it’s up to you to make it. My mother said that I was making music before
I formed words."
In 1996 Paula Cole entered a New York City recording studio to begin production on This Fire, the follow-up to her stunning 1994
debut, Harbinger. Two weeks later, the singer songwriter/producer/multi-instrumentalist emerged with what she modestly referred
to as her "little piece of art," an emotionally resonant album that rippled with earthy sensuality, soul-on-the-sleeve-sincerity
and beautiful, poignant melodies that could not be erased. Fueled by two smash singles, "Where Have All The Cowboys Gone?"
and "I Don’t Want to Wait," (a.k.a. the theme to Dawson’s Creek), This Fire blazed onto the pop charts, blanketing
both MTV and VH1, while garnering a remarkable seven Grammy nominations, including one for the Producer of the Year. Paula is the
first woman in Grammy history to receive that honor. The New York Times called her, "…a rising talent with tremendous
artistic potential," while Entertainment Weekly praised Paula as, "…a feisty poet with a soaring voice and a funky
If This Fire served notice of Paula’s arrival, then new self-produced album Amen is confirmation that she’s here to
stay. Together with former schoolmates/collaborators of the past 11 years, "soul brothers" Jay Bellerose (drums) and Kevin
Barry (guitars), Paula has created an album without borders — a fresh, soulful record that inspires and celebrates life through
an intoxicating blend of incendiary vocals, warm, supple grooves and soothing, graceful wordplay. It’s a safe to say that
from both a musical and spiritual standpoint, Amen is her most ambitious record to date.