Paula Frazer

Track Listing:

  1. Bitter Rose
  2. Game of Broken Hearts
  3. Watercolor Lines
  4. Always On My Mind
  5. Waiting for You

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"Paula Frazer's voice is pure bliss..." -- Performing Songwriter (Nov 2005)


Paula Frazer

Live at the Ace of Spades

Recorded live at the Ace Of Spades in 2005, this live recording is the perfect accompaniment to Leave The Sad Things Behind -- the most completely realized, thoroughly individualistic statement in the entire Paula Frazer/Tarnation catalogue yet.

Those describing Paula and her music always begin with her extraordinary voice, and rightfully so: Frazer's singing makes angelic choirmasters green with envy. At the same time, it carries a sensual earthiness with its slight Southern twang, an accent stemming from childhood days singing in her father's choir at his church in northern Arkansas. Songs like "Watercolor Lines" provide brilliant showcases for her remarkable vocals. "Long Ago" is as deep and movingly written as anything she's ever done. On the lighter side is the album opener "Always On My Mind" which has the hooks and grooves of Graham Parsons' Byrds. "Waiting For You" is an epic of longing with a striking, powerful chorus.

It was in the 80's that Frazer first moved to San Francisco and began playing with punk-rock vegans Trial, then fembot, and Goths Frightwig. But it was not until Tarnation in the early 90's that Paula found the format that would bring her voice and songs to world outside San Francisco. With her first recording in this context, I'll Give You Something To Cry About -- subsequently re-released by 4AD as Gentle Creatures with some songs re-recorded and other songs added -- Paula's Tarnation became a cornerstone block in the nascent edifice of Americana music (it was touted by Rolling Stone one of the 25 best Americana records ever). Mirador, the follow-up, found Paula enriching her ouevre with Ennio Morricone darkness and Scott Walker plushness. Mirador was her first work done with co-producer David Katznelson and the last she would use the name "Tarnation" for.

The first work made under her own name was Indoor Universe in 2001, released to overwhelming critical acclaim. With Indoor Universe Frazer's popularity expanded and solidified in Europe, especially in France where she's already established a cult following through with touring with Nick Cave and The Tindersticks. Indoor Universe saw Paula's songwriting maturing while she tinkered with the blend of musical influences she drew from to further perfect her unique musical identity. Spin Magazine said: "Frazer's voice has the grande-dame grandeur of Oum Kalthoum, the Southern-belle chime of Patsy Cline, and the rococo phrasing of Joan Baez."

This was followed by A Place Where I Know, a compilation of the best of ten years of home demos released while she was busy writing Leave The Sad Things Behind. Her fans had been clamoring for just this sort of raw and intimate look at Paula's creative process, which has always begun at home on her trusty four-track recorder.