Singer-songwriter and roots artist Paul Herbert Hermann Jr. was born, raised and lives in the infamous city of Stockton, California. He started playing music seriously in the late 1960's, gigging around the Central Valley and Bay Area. After a lifetime of Rock clubs and Blues bars he has become a fixture in the California Delta Blues scene. Today the scene as well as the city has fallen on hard times, but Paul has found a new lease on life and a new outlet to make music. A recording project, BROTHER PAUL, spanning 10 years has taken songs written over a lifetime and documented, transformed and elevated them to an new album and an even tighter love and appreciation for family.
THE HEARTBREAKING STORY OF ‘DREAM ON’:
One of the first songs Paul ever recorded was titled Dream On. The idea for the song came to Paul after a dream he’d had about his wife passing away, and having to say goodbye to the love of his life and the mother to his children, Alicia. Back then, Dream On rang true as a love song. With its sincerity and honesty, it instantly became adored by family, friends and of course, by Alicia. Matthew and Paul believed it to be Paul's best composition to date.
A few short years after Dream On was written and recorded, Alicia suddenly passed away. Paul and his family were devastated, and with a tragic twist of fate, life had imitated art. The lyrics now felt like a gut-punch, and haunt the band’s debut album in a way that is both dark and wonderfully cathartic. The song lays out the story of their falling in love, their many happy years, and Paul’s last goodbye to his beloved wife.
Admittedly, for a long time the song existed as a solemn reminder of the great loss suffered by all those who were close to Alicia. But as time passed, Dream On became a reminder of how special she truly was. The task of mixing proved to be difficult, as they needed to find a way to preserve the honesty and naivety of the original performance. But as hard as the process was, it also acted as a form of therapy for Paul.
The band found the perfect final touch needed when they asked their friend, Gary Wagner, to contribute on piano and organ, which gave the song it’s distinctive, “moody builds and bright crescendos.” From foreboding premonition, to devastating loss and eventually comforting homage, Dream On, has had an emotional but rich journey to become the song it is now. Brother Paul hopes you’ll take the ride with them, and give it a listen on their debut album, Cadillac Pickup Truck.
Stream the track "Dream On" on Soundcloud HERE
..and the album Cadillac Pickup Truck HERE
RIYL: Wilco, Billy Bragg, Dr. Dog, Alabama Shakes, Elvis Costello, Rolling Stones, M.Ward
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