With a string of accomplishments under his belt at the young age of 22, Harry Baker remains a multitalented creative as he reigns as an artist, songwriter, musician, and producer.
Hailing from Southern England, this inimitable, emerging artist started exploring his musical talents by undertaking guitar at the age of ten. A few years later, he would be able to add songwriting and performing to his repertoire while taking these skills with him and applying them in various ways to his ever-growing musicality.
Through the year 2020, Harry Baker has not been a stranger to sharing his artistic capabilities with the world as he has continuously treated his rapidly growing fan base to the sweet essence of his intoxicating melodies.
Touching hearts with the Latin resonance of “With You,” to the charismatic R&B timbres of his third album “Everything is Temporary,” which dive into experimental dwellings as Harry Baker is keen to offer all sides of himself as an artist and individual.
After being acknowledged by guitar legend Jeff Beck, it is crystal clear to see guitar has remained a prominent part of Harry Baker’s catalog as he emits a spotlight on Rock characteristics through the use of mercurial guitar solos in various releases.
Following the release of his most recent single “Vejer,” a politically charged Blues-Rock bop, we’re given an insight into the future sounds of Harry Baker, with his tantalizing new single, “Talk to Me.”
Delving into the reflective and dominant soundscape that is “Talk to Me,” we are gifted with the lush and vibrant talents amongst Harry Baker’s guitar playing abilities. Progressing through enticing instrumentation that dances upon your head top, there is no denying that Harry Baker is establishing his name as he touches on all of his expertise in a sophisticated manner that rides each wave effortlessly. The suave and reverberated sounds that he vocalizes fit into this musical puzzle with every powerful crash cymbal hit, creating a vivid atmosphere for you to get lost in translation.
Allowing the carefully crafted harmonious melodies that he sheds to sparkle as a focus while each note and element has its own limelight, we can hear Harry Baker perform a stimulating story as he drapes magnetism all over us. Expressing the importance of communication and in fact encouraging it, all he wants is for us to talk to him if we feel it, and we definitely feel all that Harry Baker has to offer us.
Thriving on imaginative adaptability, Harry Baker’s work amongst the self-made beats, jazz-influenced guitars, and soulful vocals strike our ears in the most pleasant manner as we get the full picture from this skyrocketing artist.
Congratulations on the release of your latest single, “Talk to Me.” With a flourishing list of releases through the year, you are definitely not a stranger to creativity! In the sweet sounds of “Talk to Me,” we would love to know; what moment inspired the storyline of this record?
When I start working on something that has a spark, I never know how the track will end up. I first put down the guitars you can hear in the verses, and build a beat around that. After I had a sort of theme going, I started to play around with vocals. The phrase “Talk To Me” just came out, it fit with the bassline, and seemed to syncopate nicely with the other elements I had down in the early process. So I had the main groove and “Talk To Me”. I was then reminded of the vast amount of talks and calls I’ve had with people since this lockdown business. I’ve almost never felt so connected or felt this sense of community since our social lives have been turned upside down. I’ve rekindled and expanded many friendships through modern-day means of communication, technology, and social media. I thought I’d target that feeling of knowing someone knows they can come to you for a chat. I wanted to build on this idea of positivity and community despite this year's constant attempts to break us all apart.
With the twists and turns that 2020 has thrown us, what are some challenges that you’ve had to overcome in order to remain consistent with your craft?
Where to begin...It’s obviously been a total spanner in the works for most creatives, self-employed individuals, musicians, artists, etc. One of the biggest letdowns for me was not being able to complete my university days with the show that would sum up my three years studying popular music. It was to be tied in with the album launch for my third album, Everything Is Temporary. As a result, I had to perform at home and totally alter the sound and “message” of the album. This doesn’t come close to the other struggles I could mention, money-loss, venues closing their doors, festivals, all the real good sh&t!
Not only did I have to accept that the album, which I’d worked my socks off for, (I mean every day, all day for almost a year and tied it in with uni and various jobs) would have no send-off, no launch party, nothing, I had to deal with not seeing my girlfriend for five months due to the lockdown. I feel awkward mentioning how this lockdown affected me because it’s affected everyone, I’m not the only one, but that’s what makes my new single so important to me, we’re all in it together and we can still embrace the beauty of being able to connect online. As far as overcoming the issues, well, you just have to get on with it. Don’t you?
In terms of themes and messages, what would you like your listeners to take away from “Talk to Me”?
Whilst the track touches on communication and collaboration through the means of modern-day technology and social media, I also wanted to send out a reminder that despite this year's negative elements, we’re all in this together. We can still find ways to feel close, positive, and connected. I’ve been away from the UK and my usual network of friends and family for over 6 months now, people have been deprived of their social antics and groups, we’ve seen all sorts come to a grinding halt. However, I wanted this track and music video to give out a positive, supportive, and community-based message. Talk to your friends, check in on them, because feeling like the person who others can come to, is a mighty privilege. That’s what inspired "Talk To Me."
Being acknowledged by Jeff Beck for your talents is an achievement in itself! What was it like for you when you got word that you were getting that recognition?
This was a rare and strange opportunity for me. His neice went to my college (I had no idea) and she noticed he was one of my influences when the college posted an article about my first album back in 2016. Whether “Uncle J” even remembers what he said about my playing, he certainly gave me a wave of confidence, a wave I’m still surfing to be honest. Getting even a couple of words from such a god, that’s always going to be a highlight. I trust his ears, you’d be a fool not to, so that’s always one of the best gifts a musician could ask for.
What were some stand out moments that you experienced when releasing your third studio album, “Everything is Temporary”?
Well, as I was in lockdown, there weren’t any conventional highlights; gigs, or shows. But I practiced some fundamental skills that all musicians must be in touch with, patience, flow, and practice. I took the time to listen, just listen. Not just to music, but what I was creating too. I feel I really developed my ears in the process of producing EIT and cleared the jump of fear of producing and mastering an album yourself. Of course, there are things I would do better next time, but that’s how we learn!
We also managed to do a show in February, and I took a trip to Holland to play for Sofar Sounds. Looking back now, I just managed to get those opportunities in before things started to go tits up, and I’m super grateful. I also got to collaborate with some amazing other musicians and friends. The album is an ultimate snapshot of my life at that time and though my time in London producing, recording, and writing that album sort of blurred into one memory, it also left me filled to the brim with motivation and encouragement to persevere through any mental or physical challenge thrown at me in regards to the severe spanner that is the Corona Virus. Perhaps that’s why my newest track came out so well despite the challenges I’ve had to deal with.
What are some words of inspiration that you would give to any artists that are looking to pursue music as a career?
To anyone looking to start a music career, don’t look to start a music career. Find your passion, find what interests you, find what sounds interested you learn theory, listen to all styles of music, if something’s for you, you’ll know! But, don’t be afraid to reach out to other musicians for help, if they ignore you and knock you down because of the size of your following, then it’s not their passion, passionate musicians and artists will always help. I will always help. #talktome
Other than that, get good at an instrument, and learn to sing. Even if you want to be a guitarist for the rest of your life, learning to sing and understand the distance between notes will change your life and the way you see music and sound. Subtle changes to your practice and mindset will benefit you and enhance your ability to not just play and write, but connect with others.
You mentioned that “Talk to Me,” is the sound we can expect from you moving forward. What made you realize that was the direction you wanted to take your music?
By having "Talk To Me" mastered by Pete Maher (U2, Rolling Stones, 1975) and some assistance in the production zone from Alex Lindner (Flood For The Famine), I realized the importance of having an extra pair of ears on your music. You can produce, record, and write all of your music, and that’s great, but your music won’t go anywhere on its own. It’s crucial to have another perspective, to break out of your own bubble and come forward to the real world. Alex made a vast amount of subtle changes that seriously made the track. Pete also brought the track to such a high standard. Moving forward, it’s nothing but clean mixes and saucy masters. From a songwriting point of view, I feel my music is always changing, perhaps this is one of the qualities that sets me apart from some of the other drivel we’re fed these days. I don’t know how my next single will sound yet in terms of style or genre, but I feel there are certain aspects in my music and elements that remain consistent, despite the variation in personality. What I will say is that I very much enjoy making music that gets people dancing, or feeling positive. I hope "Talk To Me" can deliver either of these emotions.