Previously Performed in: 2012, 2008
(USA) Folk, Roots, Singer-Songwriter
There is sparseness to Sam Baker’s music that belies its richness. Baker can pen the story of an entire life, from bliss to disappointment, in a dozen lines that never feel crowded and seldom call upon words of more than three syllables. The notes, formed from guitar, piano, fiddle, pedal steel and even cello, are few but their beauty is resonant.
Baker learned to do more with less, to notice details within the now, during the moments he spent between life and death after a terrorist bombing on a train he was riding in as a tourist in Machu Picchu in 1986. No wonder his characters, from the privileged to the downtrodden, wrestle with choices that take moments to make but lifetimes to understand. No wonder their faith is tested even as they step from the revival tent. Still, these underdogs of fate do more than persevere through the numb grind of daily routine; they blossom, thrive, and discover the richness hidden behind life’s sparse offerings.