“Maybe you’re tired of working for the man, he’ll do all he can to change you. Maybe you’re tired of the filth in the system diluting the purities inside…” Louis Baker.
Even with several mutual friends and a love of music, it would be years before we actually met Louis Baker. We even shared track space on the 2007 Secondary School’s ‘Play It Strange’ song writing finalist CD. However, Paper Rain had certainly heard of - and heard - him, the deep and soulful voice and guitar playing which makes you stop and listen no matter what you’re doing.
Louis is a Wellington grown lad but with shows around the World and collaborations with the likes of Eg White (who has written for Adele), Lindy Robbins (Demi Lovato's 'Skyscraper') and Tony Gad (Jon Legend's 'All of Me'), he is no small town guy. Recently, we met in his downtown studio space for a chat about creativity, social justice, conservation and music. One hour and one song in, we can see that Louis certainly has his heart in the right place - and carries it in every song he writes.
An an ambassador for our Project Jonah T-shirt, as well as our Kaipupu Wildlife Sanctuary and Kakī Stilt t-shirts, Louis understands music and art’s ability to communicate; “It’s the first time I’ve been asked to do something like this.. That’s special in itself and I’m appreciative of that. It’s a collaboration with art that has a greater depth of bringing awareness to certain causes… It’s special.”
Like us, Baker believes that each of us needs to get behind and protect our environment and our people as a nation. His passion was evident as he spoke of what he’d like to see change in New Zealand. “I want more equality throughout, generally speaking, across all sectors. I don’t want to see people living in cars. Obviously we have our own willpower to take our own courses in this life but there’s also the environment in which we live, you know, that’s a huge part of it as well… I think we could pump a lot more [money] into the [natural] environment too. I think we should retain our assets, to not sell off things which are uniquely ours here in New Zealand. I think a lot of people feel like that,” says Louis.
With a deep, soulful voice and a casual, humble nature, Baker’s integrity comes across in his immensely compelling songs. As an APRA Silver Scroll finalist and with Top Charts hits under his belt, we think Louis’ kindness is as much responsible for his success as his undeniable talent.
He’s a super nice guy, which goes a hell of a long way in our books.
IMAGES: Rachael Brown Photography