Léa Paci: From YouTube covers to international stardom, and her inspirational musical journey | Sunday Observer

Léa Paci: From YouTube covers to international stardom, and her inspirational musical journey

25 June, 2023

Celebrating International Music Day, the 11th edition of the French Spring Festival showcased a captivating live music concert at the Sri Lanka Foundation yesterday.

The event was a collaborative effort between the Embassy of France in Sri Lanka and the Maldives, along with the Alliance française of Colombo. The evening unfolded with the seamless fusion of Sri Lankan bands and the enchanting performance by renowned French singer, Léa Paci.

Hailing from the vibrant city of Paris, Léa Paci discovered her passion for theatre and acting at a young age of six. Over the years, her artistic journey led her to become a self-taught musician. Initially hesitant about TV opportunities, she eventually found encouragement from her close circle and began sharing captivating cover songs on YouTube. Her talent caught the attention of accomplished producers Tristan Salvati and Yohann Malory, known for their work with artists like Angèle and Louane.

In 2017, Léa Paci rose to stardom with the release of her debut album, “Chapitre 1,” mesmerizing audiences with her unique voice and distinctive style. The album spawned two chart-topping singles, “Pour aller où” and “Adolescente Pirate,” accumulating an impressive 40 million streams and achieving top-five rankings in global radio airplay charts.

Her exceptional talent earned her a nomination as the French Revelation at the prestigious NRJ Music Awards. Léa was invited to perform on prominent television shows and embarked on concert tours across France and Belgium, leaving an indelible mark on the music scene. Additionally, she became the face of renowned brands Adidas and Casio, lending her charisma to their advertising campaigns for two years.

Youth Observer had the privilege of engaging in a Zoom interview with the remarkable Lea Paci, just days before her eagerly anticipated tour in Sri Lanka. We delved into her thoughts and aspirations, as she graciously shared her excitement about the upcoming concert and unveiled her enchanting plans for the future.

Guest of honour

Léa Paci expressed her profound gratitude and excitement for being chosen as the special guest of honour for the 11th edition of the esteemed French Spring Festival in Sri Lanka.

Reflecting on the unexpected journey that led her to this moment, Léa conveyed her deep appreciation for the opportunity to showcase her talents on such a prestigious platform. As she recounted her recent travels to Thailand and contemplated the possibilities of sharing her music beyond her home country, she never anticipated the incredible chance to perform a French gig in Sri Lanka.

“I never, ever imagined I’d get the chance to rock a French gig in Sri Lanka! It’s wild how life takes you on unexpected journeys. Sharing the stage with incredible Sri Lankan artists is going to be epic. I can’t wait to show off my talents and soak up all the good vibes,” she said.

Unique harmonious space

As an international artist, Léa Paci aims to bring a touch of her vibrant French culture to the Sri Lankan audience through her electrifying performance at the festival. She expressed her desire for the event to serve as a harmonious space where cultures intertwine, allowing for an enriching exchange of experiences. Recognizing music as a universal language that unites people, Léa understands that the Sri Lankan audience may not comprehend the exact meaning of her French lyrics.

“I really believe that music has this amazing power to go beyond words and bring people together, no matter the language they speak. When I perform my songs, I want to connect with the Sri Lankan audience on a deep level, through the emotions, vibes, and overall vibe of my music. My biggest hope is that my music brings joy, happiness, and a sense of peace to everyone who listens. I want us to have those special moments together, where we forget about everything else and just enjoy the music. That’s the beauty of music,” she added.

Musical journey

When asked about her musical journey and the inspiration behind her career choice, Léa Paci shared a fascinating story. She revealed that her artistic path initially began in the realm of theater, where she spent a decade honing her skills.

However, her foray into music began when she picked up a guitar and started performing cover songs on YouTube. This exposure led to collaborations with music producers and the opportunity to create her own original music.

The turning point in Léa’s musical career came when she had the chance to work with the renowned record label Warner Music. As she explained, it was still a surreal experience for her, and she made the decision to fully commit to her music, putting her studies on hold.

Launching her first album in 2017 under Warner Music’s guidance boosted her confidence and opened doors for her in the industry. One of the highlights was collaborating with her favorite artist, James Blunt, and even sharing the stage with him.

However, like many artists, Léa’s journey took a different turn with the arrival of the Covid-19 pandemic. It prompted her to reassess her career and life priorities, leading her to view music beyond the confines of a business concept. As a result, she made the bold decision to part ways with Warner Music and establish herself as an independent artist. Embracing her newfound freedom, Léa has already released several singles and eagerly anticipates the exciting months that lie ahead.

Sharing her stories

Léa Paci, known for her captivating genre of French pop music, is renowned for crafting songs that delve into her personal life and intimate experiences. Her music serves as a healing balm for her own inner peace, and she aims to extend that tranquility to her listeners. By sharing her stories through her music, Léa opens the gateway for others to connect and express their own emotions, whether it be joy, pain, or any other heartfelt sentiment.

“During my live performance, I am wholeheartedly committed to engaging with the audience and providing them with insights into the stories behind my music. For me, it is incredibly important to share my personal journey and allow the audience to connect with me on a deeper, more intimate level.

“My ultimate goal extends far beyond mere fame; it is about creating and sharing something meaningful that brings solace and healing to others. Through my expressive music and heartfelt storytelling, I aspire to forge a profound and lasting connection with the audience.”

“In the gig in Sri Lanka, I will be accompanied by a talented crew comprising a drummer from Malaysia and a guitarist from Mexico. Additionally, I am absolutely thrilled to share the stage with a diverse array of Sri Lankan artists. I am genuinely excited to learn about their unique stories and music journeys while simultaneously sharing my own experiences.

“The anticipation is tangible as I eagerly look forward to this incredible opportunity to connect with the audience, exchange heartfelt experiences, and create an indelible musical memory together,” she said.

Explore Sri Lanka

Léa, being honest, hasn’t had the opportunity to immerse herself in Sri Lankan music or culture before. However, her curiosity was piqued when a friend recently returned from a captivating trip to Sri Lanka, sharing their awe-inspiring experiences.

This conversation ignited a spark within Léa, igniting a desire to explore the wonders of Sri Lanka firsthand. Surprisingly, just a few weeks later, she received a delightful invitation from the French Embassy in Sri Lanka, filling her with both surprise and uncontainable joy.

“I was absolutely thrilled when I received the invitation from the French Embassy in Sri Lanka a few weeks ago. Although my time there will be limited, and I won’t have the same opportunity as my friend did to truly discover and explore every corner of this beautiful country, I am eagerly looking forward to experiencing Sri Lanka firsthand and immersing myself in its incredible vibe,” she said.

Cultural Exchange

Léa believes that cultural exchange and events like the French Spring Festival play a crucial role in promoting international understanding through music. She emphasizes the importance of breaking stereotypes and embracing other cultures, as it allows for greater openness and exchange of ideas.

As an artist, Léa sees art as a powerful medium that bridges the gap between diverse cultures and traditions. Living in a multicultural city like Paris has enriched her appreciation for the vibrant arts scene that thrives in such settings. Léa expresses deep gratitude towards the French embassy in Sri Lanka and affiliated institutions for bringing the French Spring Festival to life.

She acknowledges that without such initiatives, as an independent artist, it would have been challenging to secure a gig in Sri Lanka. Léa firmly believes that these events are essential for promoting and sharing different cultures, fostering a deeper understanding and appreciation among people from around the world.


Léa holds great admiration for the iconic French singer Edith Piaf and finds inspiration in her timeless music. When it comes to international artists, Léa is particularly captivated by Beyoncé and deeply respects her impactful journey in the music industry. She sees Beyoncé as an artist who brings something unique and significant to the industry.

Another artist that Léa greatly admires is Dua Lipa, recognizing her talent and artistry. Looking ahead, Léa envisions potential collaborations with artists who share her passion for creating meaningful music. She is open to exploring new artistic partnerships and believes that collaboration can lead to incredible musical synergies and further creative growth.

Family vibe

Léa aims to create a warm and inclusive atmosphere at the festival, fostering a sense of family and unity among audience members of all ages. Rather than portraying herself as a distant star, she strives to bridge the gap between the audience and the artist, promoting clear communication and a genuine artistic experience.

“During my gigs, I love to incorporate a lot of improvisation, allowing the music to evolve organically based on the spontaneous situations that arise during the show. I find it incredibly attractive and entertaining to improvise, as it breaks away from stereotypes and gives birth to soothing new and spontaneous, which I believe is truly beautiful.

I’m particularly grateful that this concert is free of charge because, in France, entertainment events can be quite expensive, and I imagine it’s the same in Sri Lanka. It’s important to me that my music reaches as many people as possible, and offering it for free allows for a greater accessibility and inclusivity. Being a simple person, I hope my simplicity will resonate with the audience on a deep level,” she said.

Future plans

Speaking about her future plans, Léa is eager to release her next album and is already working on writing and producing new songs. Once she wraps up her tour in Sri Lanka, she will head back to Paris to collaborate with her producers and bring these projects to life. Additionally, Léa has her sights set on performing in other countries and is even considering a return to Sri Lanka for another gig in the near future.

Looking ahead, Léa has personal goals and aspirations as an artist. She believes it’s essential to pause and reflect on life’s journey, taking the time to appreciate the people and surroundings that often go unnoticed. This realization was sparked during her travels in various Southeast Asian countries, where she felt the need to reconnect with herself and her immediate environment.

“My personal aspiration is to deepen my self-awareness and connect with my inner being on a profound level. I strongly believe that this path of self-discovery will ignite a powerful surge of energy within me, fueling my creativity and inspiring the creation of beautiful music and soulful songs.

“By delving deeper into my own essence, I hope to unlock new dimensions of artistic expression and touch the hearts of my listeners in a more profound way. It is through this journey of self-discovery that I aspire to create music that resonates deeply and leaves a lasting impact on myself and those who embrace my art,” she added.