Though a lot of industry newcomers try, they can’t fake innocent charm. Paula DeAnda nails down the real thing, along with syrupy sweet vocals that landed her a record deal at Arista at the tender age of 16. More than a year later, she has the experience of setting the foundation for her own musical career along with some big dreams to spill seamlessly into the monstrous genre of hip-hop. Hoping to shed the title of “pop,”Â Paula sees more in her future than just a few fluffy radio hits.
Ten years from now, what would you like to be best known for?
Oh no [laughs]! I’m only 17 now. This is hard because you never know what’s going to happen in the next 10 years. I do have a lot of plans though. I would like to have my own clothing line. And I want to have my own restaurant. But I want to be known for my music above everything and I want it to be able to appeal to everybody.
As a role model for females your age, do you think weight and body image are important issues?
Yeah, but when it comes to weight, me and my friends are always trying to gain weight. All my friends are really skinny so we try and eat a lot. I guess we just have high metabolisms or something.
A lot of your songs are about love and relationships. What advice can you offer about dating and young romance?
Make sure the guy sees you for who you really are. It’s about where you are in life and it’s all about timing. Also, a guy has to be honest. That’s my number one thing. But he’s also got to make [a girl] laugh.
If you could relive any moment in your life so far, what moment would it be?
I would relive the time I was making my first album because it just went by so fast. I really would want to cherish every moment of working with every artist because I’ve learned a lot through them about being an artist myself. But the next album will be even better and I’ll have more time.
Are there any producers in particular you would like to work with?
There are so many talented people I would like to work with on my next album. I’ve heard a lot about the Underdogs; they worked with JoJo, Chris Brown, and other artists. Sean Garrett is amazing too as a writer.
Did you write your own songs?
I co-wrote all the songs on this album. Being a big part of my first album was amazing. I’ve been taking everything that’s going on with me right now, school and everything else, and I’ve been writing it down so people can feel my experience.
Do you see yourself experimenting in hip-hop?
I really do actually. It’s really hard to prove yourself in hip-hop out there. But singing R&B and even collaborating, I don’t want to get stuck in that pop category. I’m very passionate about R&B and I love working with rappers too. I think if you have a great rapper on a track, all you need is a great singer to make it a solid hit. I would love to work with Ludacris; he’s one of my favorite rappers.