After giving up a steady job in the hallowed halls of Parliament to pursue his musical dreams in London, gifted rising star Joel Baker just put out his debut mixtape ‘Bag of Dreams’. With guest appearances from Abra Cadabra and co-producing duties from Courage (Ray BLK), Kin (of the Naughty Boy Camp) and Maths Time Joy, it encapsulates a sound that falls somewhere between Ben Howard and early Jamie T while fused with the world of grime.
Joel’s already had support from some of the music industry’s most important tastemakers and his new mixtape sees Joel working with a whole host of influential producers and music industry bods whose shared list of collaborators reads like a who’s who of modern UK music talent and includes such luminaries as Stormzy, Rag n’ Bone Man and Bastille.
This exclusive video gives a little insight into the processes that went into developing the bruised, authentic and mature sound that Joel Baker shows on his unmissable new mixtape.
Speaking about the mixtape, Joel says:
‘This project was all about expressing the colours on my palette. I am from the generation where genres are there to mixed and blended, and this project showcases that. Somewhere in between J.Cole and Joni Mitchell you’ll find seven songs which bear the bruises of my soul.
‘The opener, Bag of Dreams, means the most to me because it was written at a very dark time. The big city sold me a fairy tale and I believed it. Occasionally a song will come around when it writes itself in minutes. You aren’t really writing it, you’re just coughing up your heart trying to capture what comes out. A few people tried to convince me to change lyrics because they said it made me sound ‘bitter’. But I was bitter. That’s how I knew the song worked.
‘I wrote every word and produced the majority of this mixtape myself in my bedroom. It is far from perfect in sonic or shape. But that’s the point. In sacrificing the gloss I hope you get stuck in some of the wood grains left untouched. However it would be wrong not to acknowledge the help I’ve received on this project. An incredible producer called Hoost has transformed an old song of mine “Further Than Feelings” into something new. My main man Courage (Ray Blk) also produced the Biggie Reworking of “Story”. I was a fan of Abra Cadabra before, but seeing his magic in the studio has left me with so much respect for him.
‘Lastly, working with Maths Time Joy was definitely one of the highlights. The vibe was so natural and I’m really proud of the song we wrote. I think it’s my favourite track. I wanted to put a magnifying glass on the beautiful normality of love. Lines like “I’d miss Match of the Day for you” summarize the narrative. I am so proud to be working on a full length project with Maths in the coming months.’
Check Out Joel Baker in the studio here:
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