Sam Baker

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Sam Baker

Postby KarenZ » Mon Oct 23, 2006 11:53 am

Folks,

Over the past few months (since July) many of you have heard Ellis or heard about Ellis' performing a Sam Baker song called "change". Here's an article about Sam that appeared in the Houston Chronicle earlier this year that tells quite a story...

One moment transforms a life: Surviving tragedy makes Sam Baker's songs resonate.

KarenZ
Last edited by KarenZ on Thu Jan 03, 2008 8:47 pm, edited 2 times in total.
"Some people are born to make great art and others are born to appreciate it. It is a kind of talent in itself, to be an audience, whether you are the spectator in the gallery or you are listening to the voice of the world's greatest soprano. Not everyone can be the artist. There have to be those who witness the art, who love and appreciate what they have been privileged to see." -- Ann Patchett in Bel Canto.

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Postby paddyinthepub » Mon Oct 23, 2006 2:42 pm

Been wonderin about this Sam Baker fella for months now. Ellis is covering one of his songs. I've looked him up once before, oh, some cursory google affair and quick read of some small bit of info and maybe a tour date or two listed. I moved on and just plumb forgot......Til today.

That was some article I just read via the link to the Houston Chronicle.

If ya have the time...it's a very interesting read.

I wanna say I once asked Ellis if Sam Baker played guitar left handed. I'd seen a photo of him with guitar in hand...and it seemed he was holding it as tho a left handed player. Well...he is in fact a lefty player, but my gosh the reason for that has just been revealed to me. Whew!!!

Ya just know a songwriter is making waves when his name is mentioned in the same breath as Guy Clark and Townes Van Zandt.

Gotta get me to a Sam Baker CD.

Mercy

Thanks Karen. :)
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
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Re: Sam Baker

Postby herve » Mon Nov 20, 2006 6:43 pm

KarenZ wrote:Folks,

Over the past few months (since July) many of you have heard Ellis or heard about Ellis' performing a Sam Baker song called "change". Here's an article about Sam that appeared in the Houston Chronicle earlier this year that tells quite a story...

One moment transforms a life: Surviving tragedy makes Sam Baker's songs resonate.


KarenZ


Hi Karen and everyone,

is it possible to hear that song somewhere? I am under Sam Baker's spell.

Herve

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Postby KarenZ » Mon Nov 20, 2006 7:12 pm

Allo Herve! Welcome back to the Ellis Paul board mon ami! :)

You can hear a 2-minute snippet of "change" at CDBaby. The song is only 2:53 long so that's almost the whole thing. :) Here's the link:

Sam Baker on CDBaby

And you can hear 4 songs in their entirety on Sam's MySpace:

Sam Baker on MySpace

KarenZ
"Some people are born to make great art and others are born to appreciate it. It is a kind of talent in itself, to be an audience, whether you are the spectator in the gallery or you are listening to the voice of the world's greatest soprano. Not everyone can be the artist. There have to be those who witness the art, who love and appreciate what they have been privileged to see." -- Ann Patchett in Bel Canto.

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Postby herve » Mon Nov 20, 2006 7:13 pm

Thanks Karen, I do have the CD, but what I am looking for is Ellis' version ;-)))

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Postby herve » Wed Jun 20, 2007 1:51 am

Image

Sam has a new album out this summer, called "Pretty World". It's just as good as "Mercy".

Click to play the opening cut, "Juarez"

And there is a video of Sam
here

Hervé

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Postby Richard + Jela » Wed Jun 20, 2007 3:40 am

Herve, thanks for the link - the video is great (wish it was longer!). Bob Harris on BBC Radio has played a couple of tracks from the forthcoming CD 'Orphan' and 'Broken Fingers' - the latter is a real tearjerker and sent shivers down me when I heard it.

I can't get the link to the new song to work but will keep trying.

Any chance of you getting him over to play in Paris? We'd be on the Eurostar in a heartbeat!!!

Hoping that Ellis might sing 'Change' at WoodyFest

Jela

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Postby herve » Wed Jun 20, 2007 4:41 am

Richard + Jela wrote:I can't get the link to the new song to work but will keep trying.


Try here

Richard+Jela wrote:Any chance of you getting him over to play in Paris? We'd be on the Eurostar in a heartbeat!!!


I'd love to! Hopefull next year as my schedule til Xmas is pretty hectic!

06/25: Gary Louris
07/12: Eric Andersen avec Stan Noubard-Pacha
09/04: Richard Shindell & Joseph Parsons
10/04: Johan Asherton & Alastair Moock
10/17: Geoff Muldaur and Ralston Bowles
11/08: Peter Mulvey & Jolynn Daniel
12/06: Terry Lee Hale
12/13-15: Plainsong (Iain Matthews & Andy Roberts)

http://acousticinparis.blogspot.com/

But next year I hope!

See you soon,

Herve

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Postby Richard + Jela » Wed Jun 20, 2007 6:53 am

Thanks, Herve - got the link to work and listened to 'Juarez' - love the accordion, guess that's down to Joel Guzman.....another really atmospheric song, just takes you to the place its set in.

Can't wait to get the new CD

Jela

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Postby KarenZ » Wed Jun 20, 2007 9:25 am

Herve,

Thanks for the heads up - I didn't know Sam had a new CD in the works. Wow...the song "Juarez" is a plethora of lovely sounds....and its vivid imagery feels both painful and peaceful at the same time...

KarenZ
"Some people are born to make great art and others are born to appreciate it. It is a kind of talent in itself, to be an audience, whether you are the spectator in the gallery or you are listening to the voice of the world's greatest soprano. Not everyone can be the artist. There have to be those who witness the art, who love and appreciate what they have been privileged to see." -- Ann Patchett in Bel Canto.

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Postby KarenZ » Wed Jun 20, 2007 10:15 am

Folks,

Hey....a heads up to those of you in the Takoma Park, Maryland area - just noticed that Sam Baker is performing there at a venue called Sangha tomorrow night and Friday night! Sue Ellen.....please try to go and report back! :)

KarenZ
"Some people are born to make great art and others are born to appreciate it. It is a kind of talent in itself, to be an audience, whether you are the spectator in the gallery or you are listening to the voice of the world's greatest soprano. Not everyone can be the artist. There have to be those who witness the art, who love and appreciate what they have been privileged to see." -- Ann Patchett in Bel Canto.

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Postby KarenZ » Wed Jul 18, 2007 11:55 am

Picked up Sam Baker's new CD Pretty World at WoodyFest. It's stunning.

KarenZ
"Some people are born to make great art and others are born to appreciate it. It is a kind of talent in itself, to be an audience, whether you are the spectator in the gallery or you are listening to the voice of the world's greatest soprano. Not everyone can be the artist. There have to be those who witness the art, who love and appreciate what they have been privileged to see." -- Ann Patchett in Bel Canto.

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Postby KarenZ » Thu Jul 26, 2007 7:43 am

Arthur Wood has reviewed Sam's new CD Pretty World in this week's FolkWax e-zine.

Real-Deal, Cut-To-The-Chase, (07/18/07)

Pretty World is Itasca, Texas-born, Sam Baker's sophomore solo album. It comes three years after he self-released his twelve-track debut Mercy. As far as Baker is concerned, I feel like something of a Johnny-come-lately. A friend sent me a CDR copy of the latter recording complete with artwork about a year back and I faintly recall that I gave it a cursory hearing at the time. It was during a breakfast conversation with a Texas-born friend at Kerrville's International House of Pancakes during my recent Folk festival trip that Baker's name came up, followed by a must-buy Mercy recommendation. Well my usual Austin haunts were clean out of Mercy, but a day later I came up trumps at Sundance Records in San Marcos. Well, truth to tell, the new front cover artwork, relative to the CDR version, threw me for a minute. Once inserted, the Mercy disc remained in the CD player alive and rotating till I handed back that hire car at Bergstrom Airport in Austin many days later. As an original song collection it is truly that good, so go get yourself some Mercy today.
On Pretty World, in support of Baker's songs, album producers Walt Wilkins and Tim Lorsch reprise their roles - once again impeccably and with aplomb - while the main support players Watkins (vocal, acoustic guitar), Lorsch (violin, octave violin, and mandolin), Mike Daly (pedal steel guitar, resophonic guitar), Ron De La Vega (bass, cello), and Mickey Grimm (drums, percussion) are augmented on this occasion by Rick Plant (electric guitar). Where the twelve song titles on Mercy each consisted of an economic single word, Baker has been considerably more adventurous on Pretty World and among his second dozen creations three of them feature a generous two-word title while two cuts are instrumentals - albeit that the longer of the latter features the chorus from the album title song. As before, Baker supplies vocal, acoustic guitar, and harmonica, while the coterie of supplementary players on this occasion includes Joel Guzman (accordion), Fats Kaplan (accordion), Lloyd Maines (pedal steel guitar, resophonic guitar), and Gurf Morlix (vocal, electric guitar). The main venue for the recording sessions was once again Nashville's Dog Den Studio, plus some additional recording took place in Austin - Sam's current base - at Ray Benson's (Asleep At The Wheel) Bismeaux Studio.

As I noted earlier, the song titles are mostly single words, except that in the liner booklet the opening track appears as "Juarez (A Song To Himself)." Set in a borderland whorehouse the repeated hook in each verse pretty much runs to "He sings an old song/A song to himself/He sings waiting round to die." Anyone with a modicum of knowledge of the songs of Townes Van Zandt will recognise the final four words in the foregoing quote as a song title that graced the late Texan's eponymous debut album For The Sake Of The Song in 1968. I guess you may have to be mature in years to truly get Baker's vignette. In the fourth verse "A beautiful woman/Wraps around his shoulder" utters the astute summation "hell of a deal, ain't it - getting older." The main character in "Orphan" is abandoned by her mother and subsequently raised in a children's home where she wasn't exactly loved - "A straight haired kid in a house full of curls." As the song draws to a close, now a grown woman, we learn that she has deserted one fiancé, two husbands, and is currently living with a fourth man. In "Slots" an old woman who resides in a trailer park sits gambling in a Reno casino.

"Pretty World" includes some poignant only-in-the-moment reflections that make our existence on this planet rather special. Baker's musician sister, Chris, opens "Odessa" by singing the opening verse from Stephen Foster's "Hard Times Come Again No More," following which Baker picks up the saga of a family who pulled black gold from below the Texas earth and of their errant young male offspring - "He was an Odessa boy with a daddy in the money" who "killed a girl when he rolled the Corvette/Daddy's money made her lawyers go away." Now grown old and living alone in his "dead daddy's place," still a bachelor, the former Odessa boy will depart this plane leaving no tangible genetic footprint. In the closing verse, Baker remarks that the course of our lives can be irrevocably changed by a single event, "See he loved the girl who was penned in the Vette," and as the track closes Chris reprises "Hard Times...," this time as counterpoint to her brother's vocal.

Across a mere two hundred seconds in "Sweetly Undone," Baker has penned the most exquisitely beautiful and sensuous love song I've heard in many a year. It's a hot summer's afternoon as a couple lie by the pool in St. Augustine, Florida. He has a copy of Twain and she a book on Africa. Nearby there are cardinals and roses. He reflects that there's been lots of rain and that her top is undone. Then he recalls that New Year's Eve when "Oh father, oh son" he saw her slowly undress for the first time.

Baker cranks up the pace for the lyrically edgy and dark "Psychic," the pivotal line being that in this life "You gotta choose truth, or you gotta choose lies." In Baker's "Boxes" a woman uses such receptacles for storing her mementoes, photographs, trophies, ribbons, Valentine cards, and more. As for 'more'...for many American families, in recent decades, there has been a letter, one whose receipt "Came on a day that turned black/A grateful nation informs you/Your first lieutenant is not coming home."

"Prelude" is a thirty-second-long instrumental played on accordion and it's followed by the sombre "Broken Fingers," which if put to the test I'd guess is a remembrance in the vein of "Steel" (on Mercy) - "Some things don't heal/I can't wake up from a dream/When the dream is real/These broken fingers" - of the 1986 explosion in Peru in which Baker was a victim. "Days" is sung in Spanish, while the lyric appears in English in the liner booklet. Set in December it portrays a family scene, hectic and joyous as the evening meal is prepared. Baker closes with the simple invitation to communion - "Dinner is ready they say/Come to the table/Come." As I mentioned in the second paragraph of this review toward the close of the atmospheric second instrumental, "Pretty World Recessional," the chorus from the album title song is reprised by Sam Baker and Marcia Ramirez.

In recent times the name of many musicians have been bandied around in an attempt to describe Baker's music, including that of John Prine. The only connection I perceive that relates Baker and Prine is that they both write songs, while in the mould of real-deal, cut-to-the-chase Texas scribes Guy Clark and Terry Allen, Sam Baker is a true song poet. It's all down to an economy with words...something about painting the whole picture, telling the whole story.

Arthur Wood is a founding editor of FolkWax.


KarenZ
"Some people are born to make great art and others are born to appreciate it. It is a kind of talent in itself, to be an audience, whether you are the spectator in the gallery or you are listening to the voice of the world's greatest soprano. Not everyone can be the artist. There have to be those who witness the art, who love and appreciate what they have been privileged to see." -- Ann Patchett in Bel Canto.

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Postby paddyinthepub » Thu Jul 26, 2007 12:19 pm

...sign me up!!! 8)

Thanks for posting Arthur's review for us, Karen.

I've thought and said it before, I've got to get me some Sam Baker music.
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
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Postby Richard + Jela » Thu Jul 26, 2007 3:03 pm

Well the BBC have just played 'Broken Fingers' on the radio and the DJ (Bob Harris) said that it is fast becoming his song of the year! This is the third, possibly fourth time he's played it and the audience reaction has been amazing.

Can't wait for Sam to come over to the UK in December and better still he's playing just up the road from us at 'Acoustic Sussex'

Can I say a big 'YEE HAW?'

Jela

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Postby Richard + Jela » Wed Dec 05, 2007 6:18 am

Just 'coming down' from having seen Sam Baker three nights running - what can I say? He's just awesome.

The audience reception has been something else particularly on the first night of the tour in London. Virtually a sell out with 120/130 people there and in excellent sing along mode on 'Juarez' and 'Orphan' which contains 'Sweet Chariot' the song adopted by fans of the English Rugby Team. He, I think, was quite overwhelmed by the response.

Between songs, he talks and talks and is so funny - one moment I'm laughing out loud and the next am all goose pimples because the songs are so moving.

He's doing quite a number of dates on the tour and I'm sure that the receptions will be similar to the first three. He's recorded a session for BBC Radio 2 which is going out on Dec 13th - so am looking forward to that.

You guys who are going to Passims on 30/12 are in for such a treat. I can just imagine what the banter between him and Ellis will be like! Somehow I need to get a recording!


Jela

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Postby KarenZ » Wed Dec 05, 2007 6:49 am

Jela,

Thanks for the report! It's wonderful to hear how well Sam was received! I'm looking ofrward to hearing him again on the 30th at Passim. :)

KarenZ
"Some people are born to make great art and others are born to appreciate it. It is a kind of talent in itself, to be an audience, whether you are the spectator in the gallery or you are listening to the voice of the world's greatest soprano. Not everyone can be the artist. There have to be those who witness the art, who love and appreciate what they have been privileged to see." -- Ann Patchett in Bel Canto.

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Postby herve » Fri Dec 07, 2007 4:11 pm

Sam was on KUT 48 days ago

Image

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Postby Richard + Jela » Fri Dec 07, 2007 5:28 pm

Herve thanks for the link - what a great interview, in parts funny and in others, sad, just so typical of the man himself.

Next time he comes to Europe you'll have to get him on at Pomme d'Eve. He's getting a fantastic reception at his shows here in the UK.

Jela

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Postby herve » Fri Dec 07, 2007 5:37 pm

Richard + Jela wrote:Herve thanks for the link - what a great interview, in parts funny and in others, sad, just so typical of the man himself.

Next time he comes to Europe you'll have to get him on at Pomme d'Eve. He's getting a fantastic reception at his shows here in the UK.

Jela


Hi Jela,

I wish I would, but the sad news is that I'm stopping the series after the Greg and Bo shows in April, too much work and too much time for a hobby that has turned into a real part-time job with some kind of an effect on my business and family life...

See you and Richard in April?

Hervé

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Postby Richard + Jela » Sat Dec 08, 2007 4:02 am

Herve, so sorry to hear that - you will be missed not least by all the wonderful artists who have appeared there over the years........and yes we plan to be there for Greg Brown.

Jela

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Postby KarenZ » Sat Dec 08, 2007 8:23 am

Herve,

Thanks for the link. Like Jela, I too am sorry to hear your news. Thanks for all you've done over the years.

KarenZ
"Some people are born to make great art and others are born to appreciate it. It is a kind of talent in itself, to be an audience, whether you are the spectator in the gallery or you are listening to the voice of the world's greatest soprano. Not everyone can be the artist. There have to be those who witness the art, who love and appreciate what they have been privileged to see." -- Ann Patchett in Bel Canto.

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Postby paddyinthepub » Sat Dec 08, 2007 10:51 am

Really enjoyed the KUT Austin interview with Sam Baker....thanks Herve. 8)
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
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Postby Richard + Jela » Sat Dec 08, 2007 4:26 pm

In Sam's song 'Baseball' there's a line that refers to 'another pop fly'

What's a 'pop fly' ????

This enquiring UK mind wants to know!


Ther's a video of him performing the song on Baseball

Jela

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Postby paddyinthepub » Sat Dec 08, 2007 10:05 pm

Jela, let's see...a pop fly is when the batter hits the ball rather high in the sky. It's usually caught by a fielder for an out.... :(
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
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Postby Richard + Jela » Sun Dec 09, 2007 4:07 am

Thanks Paddy - I had no idea - wondered if it was something to do with the way they serve popcorn! Now it makes sense.

What was that saying about UK and US - people divided by a common language??

Jela

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Postby paddyinthepub » Sun Dec 09, 2007 10:04 am

Jela, the Sam Baker video you provided -- wow -- thanks for the treat. The KUT Austin interview and now the video. You guys are great!!! :)

Language(s) crack me up every now and then. Funny how we can take some things for granted. Happy to help on the pop fly question.
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
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Postby paddyinthepub » Sun Dec 16, 2007 5:24 pm

"A Prairie Home Companion" on the car radio today. The show starring Garrison Keillor had been taped in front of a live audience in New York City. (unsure of original air date)

A stop at the post office (Christmas cards mailed :D ) for ten minutes and then back in the car. Garrison had a kid onstage picking a name out of a hat. The prize was an all expense paid trip to St. Paul, Minnesota. He draws the random name and says out loud when asked:

Sam Baker.

Coincidence, I thought surely. :wink:

Then Garrison Keillor took the entry in hand and said:

"Congratulations to Mr. Sam Baker of Austin, Texas." :shock:

It's got me wondering how many Sam Bakers might live in Austin.

:D
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
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Postby wendy » Mon Dec 17, 2007 9:25 am

Ha! I heard that too, Paddy, and wondered the same thing! :lol:
(and also wondered how we could find out if this was THE Sam B....)
-wendy

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Postby paddyinthepub » Mon Dec 17, 2007 10:47 am

Since I missed a few minutes of the show while in the Post Office, and don't listen to Praire Home Companion that often, I wondered:

If it's possible that the next week's guest musical artist is announced in the format of a name drawn out of a hat? Sort of a skit of sorts? They are a creative bunch over there, so maybe it was along those lines?

No question Sam Baker was the winner, but was it "our" Sam Baker?

I hope so, but even more than that, I hope it was a way of saying that Sam Baker was going to be appearing on a future taping of the show. :D

Does anyone know if Sam Baker has been on A Prairie Home Companion?
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
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Postby wendy » Mon Dec 17, 2007 12:58 pm

No, I don't think Sam Baker has been on PHC yet. One never knows what could happen in the future, though!

That drawing was for a vacation trip to Minnesota in February (I think). The names in the hat were members of radio stations that carry PHC (again, I think that's what they said... you can always find out more a http://www.PrairieHome.org)
-wendy

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Postby paddyinthepub » Mon Dec 17, 2007 1:46 pm

Thanks, wendy!!!

Minnesota in February...yikes!!! :D

Not sure the "ice has rolled out" by then..... :wink:
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
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Postby Richard + Jela » Tue Dec 18, 2007 5:34 am

Last Thursday Sam Baker was 'in session' on Bob Harris BBC Radio 2 and you can hear the full interview/songs on his website:

Sam on BBC Radio 2

If you explore the website and look in the gallery you'll see some pix of the UK Tour as well as a review of the concert in Glasgow.

As Karen knows, the man can do no wrong in my eyes - he was/is just awesome in concert (and on CD too)

Jela

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Postby paddyinthepub » Wed Dec 19, 2007 9:26 am

Really enjoed this interview with Sam Baker. It's the 2nd or 3rd time I've heard him interviewd on radio (thanks to the links here :D ) and each time I learn a little more about the man and artist. He's genuinely funny one minute and extremely insightful the next. I learn something new every time. 8)

Thanks, Jela. It's great to have these lil peeks into Sam's life and music. :wink:
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
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Postby paddyinthepub » Thu Jan 03, 2008 7:37 am

From Folkwax e-zine that arrived today:

We had many great nominees for FolkWax Artist of the Year. Before we get to the nominees we would like to recognize some of the artists who received many nominations, but not quite enough to get on the ballot. Among those with larger numbers of nominations who didn't make your final ballot were Sam Baker, Christine Kane, Richard Thompson, Levon Helm, and Tom Pacheco. And there were countless famous and regional nominees with a small handful of nominations. They are all wonderful artists and we are honored to have their names submitted.

And the nominees for FolkWax Album of the Year are (in alphabetical order):

Children Running Through - Patty Griffin
The Historical Conquests of Josh Ritter - Josh Ritter
Hollywood Pocketknife - Eric Taylor
Pretty World - Sam Baker
The Secret Hits - The best of Tom Pacheco Vol. 1 - Tom Pacheco

Congrats and good luck to all nominees...... :D
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
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Postby KarenZ » Thu Jan 03, 2008 9:21 am

I know Jela will be happy about the Sam Baker nomination. :)

(They are all wonderful artists.)

KarenZ
"Some people are born to make great art and others are born to appreciate it. It is a kind of talent in itself, to be an audience, whether you are the spectator in the gallery or you are listening to the voice of the world's greatest soprano. Not everyone can be the artist. There have to be those who witness the art, who love and appreciate what they have been privileged to see." -- Ann Patchett in Bel Canto.

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Postby Richard + Jela » Thu Jan 03, 2008 10:22 am

You bet Karen! He'd be my No 1 without any doubt whatsoever.

Four of those five CDs are in our collection (ex Tom Pacheco) so I do agree that they're all wonderful artists. It'll be interesting to see who wins.

Jela

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Postby herve » Thu Jan 03, 2008 4:06 pm

Richard + Jela wrote:You bet Karen! He'd be my No 1 without any doubt whatsoever.

Four of those five CDs are in our collection (ex Tom Pacheco) so I do agree that they're all wonderful artists. It'll be interesting to see who wins.

Jela


Same for me. To me there is no doubt. As much as I love Eric Taylor, Sam Baker has produced the best album of the four listed. Intriguing though, that Eric is nominated in this category as his CD is not even out in the US!

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Re: Sam Baker

Postby bonuela » Thu Jan 03, 2008 5:01 pm

KarenZ wrote:Folks,

Over the past few months (since July) many of you have heard Ellis or heard about Ellis' performing a Sam Baker song called "change". Here's an article about Sam that appeared in the Houston Chronicle earlier this year that tells quite a story...

One moment transforms a life: Surviving tragedy makes Sam Baker's songs resonate.

KarenZ


I can't read the article. :-( Can anyone sum it up for me?
I let my music take me where my heart wants to go. ~ Cat Stevens

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Postby Richard + Jela » Thu Jan 03, 2008 5:34 pm

Bonnie - looks like the article has been removed but I do remember reading it and it told Sam's story.....in 1986 he was on a train to Macchu Pichu in Peru, in a carriage with a German family (mother, father and 7 yr old son) In the luggage rack above the mother's head was a bomb that had been placed there by a (terrorist) group called 'The Shining Path'

The bomb exploded and killed the other 3 occupants of the carriage, Sam survived but had horrendous injuries and has endured about 20 surgeries. He's completely deaf in his right ear and only has partial hearing in his left ear (he recently got a new hearing aid which seems to have given him better hearing, altho' most of the time all he hears is a ringing as he has tinnitus). Because of the damage to his hand he had to re-learn to play the guitar left-handed. Naturally, something like what he has been through has and still takes time to process and in 2000 he started writing (I think about the experience) but did not release his CD 'Mercy' until 2004. This was followed by 'Pretty World' in 2007.

Some of the songs are about the bombing and 'Broken Fingers' is the most moving song I've ever heard........its about trying to come to terms with the fact that he survived but the 7 yr old boy died. 'Steel' is another one about the bombing as too is 'Angels' about the people who dived in to save the injured without thought for their own safety.

He is an extremely perceptive individual, I think that this comes from what happed to him and because he's still trying to find answers to many questions - I've heard him say in interviews that he still can't get too close to the events of that awful day and the aftermath. His writing is so sparse but he says so much in very few words. His songs are like mini movies and one of my favourite lines is from 'Orphan' 'a straight haired kid in a house full of curls' it speaks volumes about not fitting in, being alone, being different, not being accepted for who and what you are.......he says so much with so few words

I'm rambling on but I think I've covered the gist of the article - he is one amazing guy!

Jela

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KarenZ
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Postby KarenZ » Thu Jan 03, 2008 6:31 pm

Folks,

I've corrected the link. Sometimes when an article is archived, the url changes.

Things change. They change alot. :D

KarenZ
"Some people are born to make great art and others are born to appreciate it. It is a kind of talent in itself, to be an audience, whether you are the spectator in the gallery or you are listening to the voice of the world's greatest soprano. Not everyone can be the artist. There have to be those who witness the art, who love and appreciate what they have been privileged to see." -- Ann Patchett in Bel Canto.

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Postby KarenZ » Thu Jan 03, 2008 9:19 pm

Jela,

I love that line too! :)

KarenZ

Richard + Jela wrote: His songs are like mini movies and one of my favourite lines is from 'Orphan' 'a straight haired kid in a house full of curls"
"Some people are born to make great art and others are born to appreciate it. It is a kind of talent in itself, to be an audience, whether you are the spectator in the gallery or you are listening to the voice of the world's greatest soprano. Not everyone can be the artist. There have to be those who witness the art, who love and appreciate what they have been privileged to see." -- Ann Patchett in Bel Canto.

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Postby Patti » Fri Jan 04, 2008 10:59 pm

below is from a Lucy Kaplansky newsletter. Sometimes names keep popping up and there is usually a good reason for it. I am going to have to check this artist out.

I had a very fun tour in the U.K. (Scotland, N.Ireland, and England),
although it was pretty darned quick, 4 shows in 4 days. I had a really
talented guy open for me, his name is Sam Baker, he’s from Austin. I highly recommend his 2 CDs, “Mercy” and “Pretty World” which are available through his website, www.sambakermusic.com. He’s a pretty terrific songwriter and wonderful performer, and also a great guy. You’ll be hearing about him, I guarantee it.
"Embrace what you have in common, celebrate what sets you apart" Ellis Paul

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Postby paddyinthepub » Sat Jan 05, 2008 12:56 pm

I'm going to step out on a limb here. When I first heard some of Sam's tunes on his myspace I was less than impressed. Sure Ellis was a fan of Sam's and he was covering "things change" and I loved it alot. For whatever reason, Sam's style and vocals just didn't grab me right away.

Just wanted to say: like anything, some folks will love it...some won't.

I enjoy an iced cold beer every now and then. I know folks that don't like beer at all. I cannot stand the taste of good bourbon, whiskey, or scotch for that matter...and yet, there are those folks who enjoy it immensely. I love a good strong cup of Starbucks coffee and can't stand any coffee brewed too weak. I have family members who don't like or drink coffee at all.

People are inclined to like some things.......just not all things.

I'm amazed when I play Ellis Paul music for folks and their reaction is almost non existent. So i think it's safe to say that when ya hear something ya like...ya like it....not necessarily because otheres say it's worth liking -- words of adoration only let you know it's there in the first place.

So Sam Baker's music and songs -- there for the liking -- hopefully it finds you open to a world that Sam is doing his best to figure out -- and share.

All I know is I'm liking what I read and hear so far....more to come. :wink:
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
paddy

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Postby herve » Sun Jan 06, 2008 4:43 am

Paddy,

You love too much good music not to love Sam Baker who is closer to Eric Taylor than to Ellis. And a couple songs on MySpace is just not enough, you really want to immerse in the album in the music, the voice and lyrics of Sam. I think Mercy is even more powerful than Pretty World. When I reviewed Mercy for a French magazine, I wrote that I would refund people who don't like it. No-one wrote back so far (ok maybe no-one bought it! ) :wink:

Sam Baker is a long term investment that you won't regret!

Hervé

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Postby paddyinthepub » Sun Jan 06, 2008 10:33 am

Herve....you're exactly right.....I like too much good music not to like Sam Baker. Immersing myself into the whole album vs. songs out on myspace is great advice. I'm liking what I hear on radio interviews and live performances found here on this forum. I was only trying to say in my previous post that some folks might find his song style takes a little getting used to vs. something that hits you immediately. Someone here saw Sam in concert at Passim and said they felt his songs were a little too slow style wise. I'm paraphrasing here of course, but they seemed to be less than impressed.....and with all the praise Sam's been getting everywhere lately --including here -- I just wanted to acknowledge that Sam's songs and style of performance might not resonate with everyone. At least not right off the bat. While I think most would like his music fine, others may take a while to warm up to him.

Ditto for Eric Taylor..... :wink:
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
paddy

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Postby paddyinthepub » Wed Jan 30, 2008 11:51 pm

Sam Baker and Gurf Morlix performing "Baseball" at the Great Northern Picnic on Aug.11, 2007.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=46_EWMEszi4

8)
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
paddy

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Postby Richard + Jela » Thu Jan 31, 2008 5:14 pm

Paddy - thanks!!!

Sam Baker - I don't know what it is about him (well perhaps I do) but I get shivers down my spine when I hear him sing.........he' s just wonderful AND I've only recently heard that he is in continental Europe in April and might be fitting in some UK dates in April/May......sure hope so.

Jela

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Postby paddyinthepub » Thu Jan 31, 2008 6:53 pm

Jela....a real pleasure. That concert setting looked like fun for all. A bit more research revealed the gathering was known as Fred Eaglesmith's Great Northern Picnic.

On the website, the hosts say they will not continue the series -- too much work.

They had this to say about Sam Baker leading up to the music festival:

A jaw-dropping singer-songwriter/Americana/red dirt tour de force. Seriously where have they been keeping this guy? Texas-based Sam Baker’s self-released debut album, “Mercy” is an astonishing synthesis of the whole windswept Panhandle storytelling tradition, bringing to mind dust-caked poets such as Guy Clark and Townes Van Zandt, as well as Terry Allen, Mary Gauthier and Robert Earl Keen. Maybe one reason> this album connects with such emotional force is that Baker isn’t pretending to be a survivor, he really is one - this album was written and recorded after Baker recovered from being caught in a terrorist bombing in Peru, one that killed the people sitting next to him and left Baker badly hurt. The passion for life instilled in him by this close encounter with death resonates through every note on the album.
"once we're inside, it's a carnival ride" ~ ellis paul
paddy

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Postby Richard + Jela » Fri Feb 01, 2008 3:55 am

I couldn't agree more with that write up. Wonderful!

Jela


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