FROM CONVERSATION TO COMPOSITION: Steve Erickson and musician Aidan Baker on Art and Experimentation


 In the 149th episode of Podsongs, we're honoured to feature the legendary writer Steve Erickson and Canadian musician Aidan Baker, part of the ambient/experimental music duo Nadja. They delve into the origins of Baker's musical journey, the essence of creating music across different genres, and the collaborative dynamics within Nadja. Erickson and Baker touch upon the evolving landscapes of politics, culture, and the inherent challenges and inspirations for artists. The conversation traverses the complexities of identity, the impact of global shifts on artistic expression, and the pursuit of creativity amidst a changing world. This engaging exchange not only offers insights into the respective crafts of Erickson and Baker but also serves as an inspiration for a new piece of music capturing the nuanced conversation around creativity, cultural shifts, and the undying pursuit of artistic authenticity.


00:00 Welcome to Podsongs: Introducing Aidan Baker

00:19 Exploring Aidan Baker's Musical Journey

01:53 The Creative Process and Evolution of Music

02:55 Aidan Baker: The Multi-Instrumentalist

03:44 Collaborative Projects and the Birth of Nadja

05:07 Inspirations and Influences: From Music to Literature

05:27 Steve Erickson: A Unique Voice in Literature

06:47 Exploring the Works of Steve Erickson

08:02 Aidan Baker's Reading Habits and Inspirations

12:10 The Changing Landscapes of Berlin and Personal Reflections

16:48 Touring, Festivals, and Fan Interactions

21:42 Creative Ventures: From Soundtracks to Video Games

24:29 Setting the Stage for Steve Erickson's Arrival

30:00 Navigating the High Costs of Artistic Life in Toronto

30:23 Political Shifts and the Blurring Lines Between Left and Right

31:59 The Unique Political Situation of Expatriates

32:51 Exploring the Meditative Qualities of Music

36:11 The Challenges and Rewards of Creating Video Game Soundtracks

41:42 The Impact of Political Climate on Creative Processes

46:53 Seeking Refuge and Creative Inspiration Abroad

50:21 Discussing the Dynamics of European Politics

55:12 The Role of Art and Music in Times of Political Turmoil

01:11:20 Reflecting on Canadian Identity and Political Landscape

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