Paul was born in Halifax, West Yorkshire. He joined the BBC Scottish Radio Orchestra at the age of twenty under the musical direction of Brian Fahey. Paul was a featured soloist both on radio and television recording for Scottish and national audiences. In 1980 he moved to London where he joined the BBC Radio Orchestra and the BBC Big Band.
During his professional career he had the opportunity to work with many of the world’s leading artists and musicians including Rod Stewart, Dame Shirley Bassey, Dame Vera Lynn, Harry Connick Jnr, Ella Fitzgerald, Mel Tormé, Natalie Cole, Sir Cliff Richard, Pavarotti, George Benson, Freddie Mercury & Queen, Tony Bennett, Dame Cleo Laine and Sir John Dankworth, Nelson Riddle, Michel Legrande, Robert Farnon, James Galway, Clarke Terry, Zoot Sims, George Shearing… and so the list continues.
Paul taught at Eton College, Windsor and leads very successful function bands, as well as conducting the Wally Fields Jazz Orchestra and his own Paul Eshelby Big Band.
He was the Music Director of the NYJO Academy Big Band (previously NYJO2) for many years, until retiring the end of 2014.