SAM GIVES THANKS

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SAM Baker is thankful, not only for his fans, who funded his new album via kickstarter, but also, for being alive.

The American songwriter’s new album is about appreciating life, which he , after a near death experience,knows better than anybody, is extremely fragile.

Almost twenty years ago, in 1986, Baker was on a trainwhile travelling in Cuzco, Peru, that was blown up by terrorists.

He told Scene: “It killed the people I was sitting with. I had a cut artery, brain damage, blown in ear drums and should have died but, thankfully, I didn’t.

“I had lots of surgeries. and lots of ups and dows.

“Then lots of jobs, lots of bills. I moved constantly. The east coast, the midwest, the desert.

“I tried for years to figure out what it means to be blown up - to survive when others die.

“ I wrote a lot. It was mostly drivel. But with the drivel came songs”.

Mercy, released in 2004, was the first in a trilogy of compelling albums .

It was followed by pretty world in 2007 and cotton in 2009

Baker’s fourth album is called “say grace”. The album was funded by his dedicated fanbase, through kickstarter, a website which is a funding platform for creative projects.

His followers got together to pledge more than $44,000 (around £28,000) to aid the distribution and make sure the recordings saw the light of day.

The beguiling Texan added: “ I am grateful and deeply moved by the generosity of my friends and fans.

“I want say grace to be a community project, its release supported by the listener.

“ Granted, the other records were listener supported too - but this time I was asking for support before the record goes out as opposed to asking for support once it hits the streets. 
“To say grace means to say thank you.

“It means to be grateful for what is before me — for what I have.

“It means to not be bitter about what I don’t have and really, to not be bitter about things I lost.

“I turn 59 this year. Everyday is a miracle.

“All I’ve got — no matter what I hold in my hands, drive around in, or put in the bank — all I’ve got is this one breath.

“If I am lucky, I get another.”

Sam Baker plays St Andrews in The Square on the second night of his UK and Ireland tour, accompanied by musician Chip Dolan who plays both keyboards and accordion and multi-talented vocalist Carrie Elkin.

Tickets for “An Evening With Sam Baker” are £13 from 0141 204 5151 , or from www.ticketweb.co.uk.