Paul Woida is a contemporary Christian singer, songwriter and master looper from Canada. His single 'All the Lights' demonstrates real-time looping as he builds melodies and rhythms using instruments and his voice. Louder Than The Music chatted with Paul to find out more about his looping, and to hear how the single was inspired by his own struggles with anxiety.
For those who haven't heard of you before, can you tell us a bit about yourself and how you got involved in making music?
My Mom put me into drum lessons when I was 6 years old. My whole family all the way back to my great grandparents is very musical, but I never wanted to be a professional musician because I thought it would be too difficult of a path to live. I was going to go to bible school instead but after really praying about it I felt led to study music. There, I not only fell in love with it, but I felt like I was thriving and doing what I was made to do. It took me a few years but I’ve had a career ever since.
Tell us about your recent single 'All The Lights' and what the inspiration behind it was?
It was my first ever writing session in Nashville. I had opened up with the co-writer and producer about my struggles with depression/anxiety, how it can be so dark and hopeless, and how incredible it is when God lights up the darkness and gives us a satisfying deep taste of hope. The song was written pretty quickly!
You've been described as a "Master Looper", for the uninformed, can you explain what that means?
Looping is essentially a modern way to be a one-man band! Instead of having a bass drum on your back and cymbals on your knees, you’re building the song from scratch by recording yourself live on the spot with a loop pedal. You can check it out on my YouTube channel!
For the tech geeks out there, tell us a bit about the equipment we can see you using in that video for 'All The Lights'?
It looks complicated but it’s actually quite simple! I use MainStage to trigger all of my electronic midi samples, and then run them as well as my guitar and electric drum kit, into a mixer, then into my looper.
What message would you like people to take from your music?
Everybody is looking for the same things. We all need hope and freedom. We all need to be known and loved in ways only us being united with our Creator can satisfy. It’s my goal to play my own small part in pointing people towards that hope with my music!
If you could work with any songwriter, who would it be and why?
Ed Sheeran is a major hero of mine. The way he started from the bottom with nothing and worked his way to the top has had a major influence on the way I’ve gone about my own career.
How would you define success in your career as an artist?
Success to me looks like using my music to point people to God and remain authentic to myself and my art.
What is your favorite album of all time?
‘Grace’ by Jeff Buckley is what I usually go to!
You're stuck on an island, it's hot, you only have enough battery life left to listen to one song on your phone. What track is it?
‘Do You Remember by Jarryd James.
What does the next year hold for you?
I’m moving to the States from Canada pursuing some really exciting opportunities! And I can’t wait to get back to performing on the road.