Composer, Guitarist, Singer
Celebrating six decades of guitar-playing, 72-year old composer, electric-guitarist and singer Paula Franceschi is rocking with more passion and joy than ever, and deploying that energy in the advancement of progressive ideals.
Born to working-class parents in New Jersey shortly after WWII, she absorbed their open-minded humanism as well as their love of music. Inspired by the musical culture of the ‘50s and ‘60s – from the poignant harmonies of the Shirelles and the Everly Brothers, to the balls-to-the-wall excitement of Otis Redding and the Rolling Stones – she channeled the turmoil of adolescence and her dismay at the state of the world into her song writing and guitar playing.
While living and performing in San Francisco in the ‘70s, her style was influenced by the blues, rock, funk, and reggae performers who made that city an artistic mecca. Paying her dues in classic four-sets-a-night bar bands, she honed her easy rapport with audiences and her signature infectious electric-guitar playing. Many of the songs she wrote during this period are still fresh and exciting today. After being assaulted at gunpoint by a stranger, her songs became darker and angrier and called more urgently for awareness and societal change. She became active in the consciousness-raising groups of the time and was chosen as co-chair of the Media Committee of the SF chapter of NOW and as an in-demand speaker for that organization.