Eli Paperboy Reed

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Eli Paperboy Reed

“It’s been a wild ride, that’s for sure,” admits Eli “Paperboy” Reed, looking back at the incredible journey that took the boyish-looking yet preternaturally mature soul belter from a Boston high school band room to a Mississippi Delta juke joint, from Sunday morning gigs behind the organ at a tiny South Side Chicago church to headlining the coolest clubs in Brooklyn with his red-hot band, and now, signed to Capitol Records.

On his major label debut, Come and Get It, Reed proves to be the life of a soulful, sweaty party in which everyone eventually gets dragged onto the dance floor. As a performer, Reed approaches each song with nothing less than utter conviction; he’s as authentically gritty as he is ingratiatingly sexy. Reed incorporates the feel of classic R&B and soul into a largely self-penned, 12-song set, produced with Mike Elizondo, the bassist-turned-producer whose credits include, among others, Eminem, Pink, Gwen Stefani and Fiona Apple. Admirers have likened Reed to such luminaries as Otis Redding and Wilson Pickett; the Boston Herald called him “Boston’s answer to Sam Cooke.” But he’s not merely trying to recreate a sound; Reed is channeling his influences and inspirations into making something all his own.

“For me,” says Reed, “it’s all about writing pop songs. Soul music was the greatest pop music of the 20th century and its influence is so far-reaching. When I pick up a guitar to write a song, the influence of the music I love invariably comes out. For me, that music has been completely internalized. I’m not trying to put anything on; this is what comes out, this is what happens, I can’t sing or write any other way than I do.”

“I try to write from phrases that I think people will respond to,” Reed explains. “Turns of phrase are very important to me,” a point illustrated most potently on his song “Name Calling” (lyric: “You went from name calling to calling my name”). “I’m very inspired by Sam Cooke in that way and I learned a lot from country music too. To be able to create a mental picture for someone with just one line is very, very important. Sam Cooke talks about writing from conversation, personal stories, little turns of phrase that catch your ear and you can make a hook out of. That’s my songwriting m.o..”

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Eli Paperboy Reed
Event Category: Live Music
When: September 23, 2013
Time: 9:30pm
Where: Mercury Lounge
Cost: $$10
More Info: http://www.mercuryloungenyc.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mercuryloungeNY
Twitter: https://twitter.com/mercuryloungeny


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