Up-and-Comers: Armen Paul

Shawn Paik for WSN
Shawn Paik for WSN

Music can be a treacherous business. Too often, young artists are lured into shady deals and crooked contracts with the hopes of success and fame. But NYU student and musician Armen Paul has managed to steer clear of these pitfalls.

Like many, Paul became interested in music at a young age through choral groups at school. At 16, he started private lessons and began recording songs.

It’s a familiar start but, unlike many young artists, Paul is business-minded. He is a sophomore at the Stern School of Business studying fine arts management. Paul is well aware of the pitfalls for new artists and knows the importance of business savvy in a tough industry.

The time for Paul to apply his business sense is drawing near. Following a September appearance on the Long Island audition episode of “The X Factor,” the rock musician has been garnering buzz on the Internet even though the judges did not advance him to the next round.

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While a Simon Cowell endorsement may have meant everything in years past, Paul noted that, in 2013, there is another way for artists to make it big.

Paul’s audition was held in front of an audience of 4,000. The crowd cheered for his performance, and they booed loudly when the judges turned him down.

Shawn Paik for WSN

“To succeed in music, the best recipe for success is putting yourself out there,” Paul said. “Even after a letdown it is important to remember you might be what someone else is looking for.”

Following his “X Factor” appearance, Paul has lived by those words. His music has attracted attention online via his own website and social media, as well as the blog BroBible.

“You might score a record deal with Universal and have a flop album,” Paul said. “What’s working for artists today is advertising and sharing music online.”

Paul has stayed busy on this front, uploading demos and sharing new music online. His folksy rock sound can be heard on singles “Mother Medusa” and “Pen in My Hand,” posted on his Facebook page, his website and his YouTube channel.

“If you want to be a musician, it’s important to get really comfortable with doing music,” Paul said. “You have to get to the point when it becomes a habit.”

Paul plans to release several new projects in the coming weeks, including a demo, and a new single, the cheekily titled “Birthday Suit.”

“So much of music sounds the same these days,” Paul said. “I’m trying to move things in a new direction.”

A version of this article appeared in the Thursday, Oct. 10 print edition. Jake Folsom is music editor. Email him at [email protected]

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