Uncharted is our new weekly showcase of rising artists. Each week our authors craft an introduction in their own unique style, followed by an insightful interview with the artist themselves.
This week, Jon Pappo profiles alt-soul diva Doe Paoro.
The beauty of accidents. Grey plane overcast dark green hills and the lake is cold. Sifting through the plains of Bagsu, Doe Paoro is lost. Stumbled upon after a climb from the groggy familiar—she hears something from afar, a wealth of breaths through the flattened space—wailing and wondrous—she is dumbstruck. Vulnerable voices, new and ineffable. And they cleave. Eternally striving for surprising for feeling new, a choir of children sing—Doe Paoro with her back on cold ground warmth from the human sound, watching herself from above and the solemn steps slide into swaying—listening, learning.
On the outskirts of her home. Syracuse—valley maple white cedar buckthorn honey locust—a cabin—a paradigm, or the stuff that makes you up. The same solitude as Bagsu, but Doe Paoro is not stumbling—she is confronting. Not above herself, but inside. Dipping her hand into the cold—shivers and the ache in your gut swelling throat and the heat is receding. The need to articulate gestations of exhalations—of what she’d rather not speak of, but must. Restrained dense plinking piano bare bones. And the vulnerable voice—a fusion. It’s alone, but there is a comfort—a trickling light.
And it cleaves.
CHARTattack: So, could you tell me a bit about yourself? What motivates you right now as an artist?
Doe Paoro: We just released the stems for our second single, "Born Whole" on Soundcloud. Right now, I'm loving this idea of giving the music away and it traveling and having a life of it's own beyond it's origin story. I think with the internet, if you try to fight and hold on to you music with everyone being able to bit torrent whatever they want- you are missing the point. We are in a whole new era of non-possessive art making where we have the opportunity to share the creative process in a completely fresh and exciting way. Global remix. That's my jam right now.
CA: I’ve read that you were greatly influenced by the Tibetan Lhamo during your trip into the Himalaya’s. How did you stumble upon this style and what attracted you to it?
DP: It's going to sound like I made the story up, but I swear it's true. I got lost on a hike up in a town called Bagsu, and I heard this incredible wailing. I followed the sound and ended up at the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts where these kids were practicing Tibetan Opera. I just layed on the ground and listened and let the sound roll over me; I'd never heard anything like it -- it made me feel something out of body. I didn't even know the voice could do that.
CA: Your voice is distinctive in ways that are sometimes indescribable, in that you mix classical training with unique vocal patterns. Are there any other styles that you’re itching to learn?
DP: I'm an eternal student so I'm sure there are tons of other styles that I will want to learn but haven't been exposed to yet. Mostly, right now, I'm looking to just continue to reinvent the way I know my own voice.
CA: I also read that Slow to Love was recorded in a cabin in Syracuse, which draws some comparison to Bon Iver. Is it safe to say that you are a rather solitary person? And what does that mean for the music that you create?
DP: When it comes to my craft, I'm a solitary person. I can't make anything honest without forcing myself to go there. When I spent time alone in the cabin, there was no where for me to distract myself from confronting my emotions on a variety of things I was going through at the time. I had to go inside myself and this is where the real music lies, for me at least -- in articulating this human experience in all of its vulnerabilities. The songs were a sort of exorcism for me; I was pulling it all out.
CA: Do you have any specific goals as an artist?
DP: Yes. I want to make music that allows people to tap into a part of themselves that they are not always in touch with. And Spread the Love. Always, man.
Stream and purchase Doe Paoro's album Slow to Love at her Bandcamp, and watch her video for “Born Whole” below.