Simon Baker just released his debut album Traces; an album that displays all of his musical sides and a wide range of House and Techno styles. His production is timeless, and his remixes are equally defined and sought after. This month his single “No Pressure” got released with a superb remix by Art Department, adding new vocals over a slow, hypnotic beat. We had a little chat with the DJ veteran.
Your music is very timeless, is that something you aim for?
Definitely not, but thanks, it’s a great compliment! I have been making House and Techno music for quite a few years now and still use a lot of outboard gear as I did when I first started out, so maybe that has something to do with it, I don’t really know the answer. It makes me happy you think so though. It certainly wasn’t the plan when I started out with the album or making music.
Is there a time in history where no music could go wrong?
I loved the 80′s. Still do. That was when I hit my teens and started discovering music. The Smiths, The Cure, Kate Bush, Duran Duran, Talk Talk, Eurhythmics etc. etc. Love it all! I would have liked to have experienced the disco era though. I was born just too late for that but still have a passion for it.
What inspire you when you sit down behind the gear?
I like to take inspiration from all kinds of sources whether it be music, people, or subject matter around me. I try not to name certain artists who inspired me, as I am inspired hugely by the different feelings and different sounds all music offers me. The album represents me and my life journey through house music ever since I picked up The Best Of House Vol3 on vinyl when I was 16 years old! That’s pretty much what changed my life and makes me want to sit behind that gear at all!
What kind of new directions in electronic music excites you at the moment?
My head is very much in a deep place at the moment. I don’t know if that’s because I am maturing and my head can’t handle the harder beats so much anymore, I’m not sure, I go in and out, but definitely the deeper the better for me right now. I like the disco sound and the more funky edged stuff we have at the moment. Have always had a love for disco.
Do have the same passion for DJ’ing as you do for producing?
I have a passion for both, but my main love is producing. When I know I’ve found something special, that gives me a buzz like nothing else.
We heard that you used to work in a hamster shop?
Ha….yes, that is true.., HOW THE HELL DID YOU KNOW THIS? I’m guessing you have been talking to Norwegian friends of mine! I worked in a pet shop for 1 year or so when I was young. I had various dodgy jobs as a kid. All helps with life experience though I think.
And is it also true you used to own a hamster named Binoculars? How did he get that name?
Again…. HA HA! Yeah, I was a weird kid and had some mad names for my pets. In the end it ran underneath the electric wire and never came back out. Maybe it was trying to tell me something!! RIP Binoculars.
What’s the story behind the title of your album?
The album title is basically about me tracing back my life and tracing the path I have taken to get to where I am now. My story involves me leaving my full time secure job and selling my house to chase this particular career path. Traces are like faint imprints in my memory.
You’re planning a move to London I hear, is it for music or just change of scenery?
Both. I love Leeds and have many friends here, but feel I need to be in a more multi-cultural city with more going on around me. I have had my time here.
What are you ambitions after “Traces”?
Well I am presently in the midst of my lengthy album tour, and I am also now back in the studio making some stuff for the other labels I work with. Kept them waiting long enough! Maybe some more collaboration with the vocalist “Debukas” whom I used on my album amongst other things, and working with some other producers also, Glimpse for one.