Princess in the Tower
At the age of eight, singer/songwriter Kirsten Paludan began composing her first songs. Over the next 15 years, she continued to dabble in songwriting while focusing on her acting and musical theater skills, writing poetry and singing all different styles of music including jazz, choral music, and opera. In 1998, after a 6 month stint touring the country with a children's theater company, and that same year, acting in Melrose Place (FOX), Ang Lee's period drama, Ride with the Devil (with Tobey Maguire), and the Spike Lee produced, Confederate States of America, she returned to her hometown of Lawrence, KS to focus on her songwriting and singing career full-time. While there, she taught herself piano, using her concert pianist grandmother's baby grand, and after several years, added the more portable acoustic guitar to her list of instruments. She moved to Kansas City, Missouri in 1999, and began singing lead vocals with one of the region's most popular variety dance bands. Two years later she started her own cover band, which from time to time, and unbeknownst to listeners, would play her original songs, as well. In 2003, Kirsten, whose voice has been called "volcanic" (The Lawrence Journal World) and "angelic," (Robert Moore, host of Sonic Spectrum on KCUR 89.3) began work on her first CD, Princess in the Tower, co-producing with longtime family friend, Greg Mackender. Over the next two years, recording for the CD was sporadic and Kirsten's solo project was momentarily sidelined after she joined two Kansas City indie bands, most notably, Olympic Size, with former members of Season to Risk and Dirtnap. In 2005, after being nominated for a Pitch Music Award for Best Female Vocalist and receiving praise from both The Kansas City Star (who called her "a young Joni Mitchell") and The Pitch Weekly for her 8-song demo, Kirsten began working in earnest to finish her solo record. Completed in December 2005, Princess in the Tower has been praised as "dreamy", "warm, rustic and austere electro-folk", with "...a sound that feels like a blend of Joni Mitchell and the Sundays (or the difference between Tori Amos and Jewel)," (The Kansas City Star) and "...an autumnal cabaret of seductive balladry" (The Pitch Weekly). Nominated again in 2006 for Best Female Vocalist by The Pitch Weekly, Kirsten plans to spend the rest of the spring and summer playing shows locally and in the fall, will begin her first tour.