Music has an incredible power to make people feel stronger with the right beats and the right lyrics. Distinguished singer-songwriter Paul Askew puts people at ease with his sublime new single, ‘Save me‘. The song features singer Tweenty8 who gave one of his finest performances in the song. It is based on his real life experiences and how he built a good life with God’s help and guidance. Her haunting and energetic vocal performance brings out the true essence of the thought-provoking lyrics. The artist recently agreed to do an interview with us, taking some time out of his busy schedule.
Thank you Paul Askew for taking the time for the interview! And congratulations on the popularity of your latest song ‘Save me’! Let’s start the interview:
DMRs: Tell us about yourself and your music.
Paul Askew: I’ve been through so much in my life. I isolated myself from people. I was mugged five times when I was a kid, and they were different family members. I just wanted to be around my mother, who was constantly in the hospital for months undergoing brain surgery. My sister Sherika was always my everything, who right now protects me and always pushes me when I feel like giving up. Also, my brother Gary with whom our relationship is strained; however, no doubt in my mind loves me. They kept me from going crazy, then my mother taught me singing and music. I fell in love. I found isolation. I found comfort and I found security. I was composing songs with what I was feeling at the time and also remixing songs with the emotions I was feeling at that time. My sister said to me the other day, Paul, you realize you created a remix in the 80s, that’s it 😂. That’s all I did and I made things mine. I never wanted to be someone or talk like someone because I was such a lender; that’s all i knew with music now that i do. I have a great producer Melvin “Mgeezy” Groggins who has been my creative backbone for over 20 years. All I have to do is sing a song I wrote and I tell him what I hear as far as instruments go and it’s like he’s on my mind that he finds exactly what I heard while singing. He is the GOAT in my eyes. I tried to work with so many producers but he is the only one who understands me. So I hug him tight.
DMRs: What is the genre of your soundscape? Why did you choose it?
Paul Askew: I love all music, but R&B soul and gospel always seem to be what I’m feeling. This is my character and my personality.
DMRs: When did your new soundtrack, ‘Save Me’, come out? What kind of response do you get from the audience?
Paul Askew: Save Me was released on 01/21/2022. The response I received brings me to tears every time I read a comment or hear a testimonial. I hear things like I’m going through this right now and it’s repeating itself. I had a woman say she just lost her son to a drug overdose and I wish he had a chance to hear that because she thinks it would have saved him . The welcome I get is what I wanted. When I decided to let God use me and surrender telling my story, I said that if I could save one person, I would have done what God wanted me to do and I could die in peace in knowing that I had made a difference and an impact by recounting my struggles. My own life would not have been in vain.
DMRs: Who is the featured artist of the track? Tell us something about him.
Paul Askew: Orlando “Twenty8” Woods Jr. Man, what can I say. He is one of the most gifted people I have ever met. Her voice is amazing. He is my background singer. It’s like the left side of my brain when it comes to background and harmonies. I’m going to sing something and he follows up with a background for it. We have incredible musical chemistry. With him and Mgeezy, everything happens effortlessly and quickly because we are so creatively matched. If time allowed, we could finish 5 songs in one day and that would be perfect.
DMRs: What is the subject of the song? How do you think this relates to listeners?
Paul Askew: Save me is a call to God for help. We all have so many demons, insecurities, flaws, inner issues that we need help with. We are angry with ourselves and we don’t know it. So this song cries out to God asking him to save me from myself. Go your way with me. Help me get out of my mind so that I can have peace and happiness. Save me from people trying to hurt me that I can’t see because I’m so stuck in my head and in my own ass. Lord, do what you want because you know what’s best for me.
DMRs: What message are you trying to convey to the public? What kind of change can it bring to their lives?
Paul Askew: My music is for people who look like me. I’m imperfect, I’m a sinner and I know I don’t get it right, however, I love the lord and have a relationship with him. I may not go to church, but God is my best friend and church doesn’t make me worse than someone sitting in the pulpit. I want my audience to know that you can sing about love and bad relationships and love God too. There doesn’t have to be a separation because people in the church cheat on me in abusive relationships and also battle mental illness. Singing songs to empower yourself and get you through this is good too.
DMRs: Tell us about your singing style. And what kind of instruments did you use in the song?
Paul Askew: I sing from emotions. So whatever I feel in that moment, that’s how it comes out. So I happen to have a style called Paul which is me lol that’s all I know. Back when I did “save me” I was going back to when I was battling depression, alcohol and drugs. I listen to this song called I will never leave. He gave me the highest of the top. I told the song to Mgeezy and said I wanted to feel the same now that I’m away from this place so he used the same instruments and it became a familiar feeling for me to be able to really m vocally express in song.
DMRs: Who wrote the lyrics and what was the inspiration?
Paul Askew: I wrote the song and this song is all I went through to save myself.
DMRs: Which artists influenced you the most and why?
Paul Askew: I’m mostly influenced by Donny Hathaway and Whitney Houston because I find myself in those two artists. They were just being themselves and fighting their demons doing it. I identify with the emotions in their voices. Their voice tells the same story as their words.
DMRs: How long have you been in the industry? How did it shape your soundscape?
Paul Askew: I have been in the industry since 2002. However, I quit in 2007 due to mental health issues, addictions and sustained injuries that kept me from walking for almost 2 years. God calls me back to the music in November 2021. He said I had work to do. I told him but you do all the work and he did it.
DMRs: Is there a record company behind your productions?
Paul Askew: I have my own venture string label which is PaulPaul Music. I would like a large distribution under my label.
DMRs: Are you currently working on another project at the moment? When can we see something new from you?
Paul Askew: Yes, I have a clothing line called MenLikeDaveThe PaulAskew Collection. I have my own style and wanted it to transcend men like me who like to look expensive and sophisticated. I’ve always wanted to make sexy clothes for older kids too. We don’t have enough beautiful fashionable clothes. So my designer David Mando and I sat down and built a line for the urban man to dress up or down. That’s what my clothing line does. I also have a line of all-natural, holistic products that nourish and revitalize skin, hair, and body with my signature scent. People always ask how my hair got so long or what I use on my skin and beard. I have all of my products made by Nuttabutta Beauty Boutique and my signature line is called KingPaul. It contains beard oils, body wash, body butter, and scented hair products like shampoo conditioner and hair and scalp oils. It’s my signature scent and I use every last product on myself. Women are always asking to get for their men, so I teamed up with Korine creator Teamer Nuttabutta to provide my people with affordable Paul clothing. As I like to call it lol.
Jennifer Stone turned her love of music to writing. She is one of the writers of Daily Music Roll and indulges in creating positive reviews, music blogs and music press releases for various artists here.