When Portland-based singer-songwriter Clara Baker opens for the Shook Twins at the Majestic Theatre on September 7, audiences will be given the chance to peek into her mind to see a love for music and nature that can only come from one born and raised in the Pacific Northwest.
Baker’s interest in music was planted early on by her parents. A musical household led to fiddle lessons, which led to fiddle competitions, that all culminated in a Kickstarted debut album at $8,908.
Since that album’s release, Baker has drawn her inspiration to create new music from the green expanses that make up our region.
“Being in the woods inspires me to slow down, be curious and notice the world around me,” explained Baker. “And I think that being curious and paying attention are foundational aspects of what it means to be a writer and a musician. My Oregon roots and sense of place have always been important to me, and the more I travel and tour, the more I value my time at home, too.”
Her return home to Oregon—and specifically Corvallis—after a seven-state tour, makes Baker’s first performance at the Majestic all the more special.
“So much of my music is inspired by time I spent in Corvallis, and at writing retreats near Corvallis, and I feel a deep connection there,” detailed Baker. “This will be my first time performing at The Majestic, though I’ve seen many shows there, so I’m certainly excited to play on a stage I love so much.”
This show also represents Baker’s continuing collaboration with the Shook Twins. Having previously performed with the band at multiple festivals and as part of Katelyn and Laurie’s 90’s all-woman cover band Sideboob, she has a deep respect for the band’s support of local performers.
“I’ve loved listening to Shook Twins’ music for years, but we didn’t meet until a year or two ago,” said Baker. “Katelyn and Laurie do so much to create community and collaboration amongst musicians in Portland and in the Northwest, and I’m a big fan of their music and their work.”
Baker strives for that sense of community in all that she does and she hopes that audiences will be able to step back, take a moment, and breathe in the music when she takes the stage at the Majestic.
“In a world where we are bombarded with distractions constantly, it feels refreshing to have a chance to be completely in the moment,” said Baker. “When I’m out in the woods, or playing music, I feel present. Songwriting and performing demand that you be in the moment. That’s part of the magic of live music and I hope audiences take that as an invitation to be present, too.”
What’s up next for the Oregonian performer? Baker will be releasing two albums in early 2019—one with her group, Five Letter Word, and one packed with her own all-original tracks. In her own attempt to create community, Baker also continues to offer guitar lessons for folks at all levels through her website and house concerts for those hoping to enjoy a night “where memories and meaningful connections with your community will be made through music.”
Clara Baker and The Shook Twins will perform at the Majestic Theatre at 7:30 p.m. on September 7. Tickets will run $23 for Seniors and Students and $25 for adults. For more, check out http://www.clarabakermusic.com.
By Kyle Cacho