Paul & Paula
BiographyHildebrand was born in Joshua, Texas, and Jackson in McCamey, Texas.
Both were attending Howard Payne College in Brownwood, Texas in 1962 when a local disc jockey, Riney Jordan, asked listeners to come to the studio and sing their songs to help the American Cancer Society.
The duo sang a song called "Hey Paula," which Hildebrand wrote, and were encouraged to make a record of it.Shelby Singleton of Mercury Records eventually signed them, but not before changing their professional name (Singleton reasoned that a pair named Ray and Jill singing about "Hey, hey Paula" and "Hey, hey Paul" did not make sense).
"Hey Paula" sold over two million copies globally, and was awarded a gold disc by the Recording Industry Association of America (R.I.A.A.) in 1963.
The pairing of Paul & Paula was credited with inspiring other famous male/female pairings down the line, mostly from record companies that had originally turned the duo down in 1962.
In November 1963 Nino Tempo & April Stevens and Dale and Grace had back-to-back Hot 100 #1s.
Jerry Butler was quickly paired with Betty Everett, and Marvin Gaye was paired with a number of female partners before Motown finally settled on Tammi Terrell.The duo released two regular albums and a Christmas-themed album after the success of "Hey Paula", which charted at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for the entire month of February 1963.
Their follow-up, "Young Lovers", reached #6 on the Billboard chart later in the same year.In 1965, Hildebrand left the act to complete his college education, having decided that a future in show business was not for him.
He made this decision in the middle of a Dick Clark Caravan of Stars road trip, and Clark had to fill in at the last minute.
Hildebrand recorded a Christian music album in 1967 called He's Everything to Me.Jackson went on with a solo career and Hildebrand returned to singing in the 1980s in the Christian duo Land & Hildebrand.
Today, the twosome get together from time to time to sing as Paul & Paula for special events.In 2002, Hildebrand and Jackson returned to Howard Payne College to be the homecoming guests of honor and Grand Marshalls.