Magazine article Variety

Authenticity Key, Says ASCAP Prexy Paul Williams at Expo, Aspiring Tunesmiths Rub Elbows with Pros

Magazine article Variety

Authenticity Key, Says ASCAP Prexy Paul Williams at Expo, Aspiring Tunesmiths Rub Elbows with Pros

Article excerpt

WHEN IT COMES to the best advice for aspiring songwriters, ASCAP president Paul Williams stresses authenticity. "I tried desperately to be David Bowie," says Williams. But when that didn't work out, he began to write ballads - one being "Fill Your Heart," which he calls "the most hippy dippy, sweet little song" that ended up on Bowie's "Hunky Dory" album.

"By me being my authentic self, the work found its way to a place where, in my heart of hearts, I really wanted it to go."

It's this kind of insight, says the man who penned such songs as "Evergreen" from "A Star Is Born," for which he and Barbra Streisand share an Oscar, that draws would-be music careerists to ASCAP's I Create Music Expo, being held April 24-26 at Loews Hollywood Hotel.

He calls the confab a "creative hang" where attendees can rub elbows with iconic songwriters to learn about their craft. "You could look at it as a delicatessen of amazing information and opportunities, everything from sitting down with Amy Grant to Dr. Luke and Jermaine Dupri."

Williams and two-time Oscar-winning composer Gustavo Santaolalla ("Brokeback Mountain," "Babel") will be among the Expo's featured conversations, where they will discuss their creative processes and go into detail about their collaboration on Guillermo del Toro's "Pan's Labyrinth" musical. …

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