Baiba, tell us something about yourself and your „mission“ in culture and arts!
My name is BAIBA (Baiba Dekena) and I am a Latvian musician, producer and culture worker, who for the past 6 years has been living in Innsbruck. I came to Innsbruck to work as an European Voluntary Service volunteer at die Bäckerei Kulturbackstube and since then I’ve stayed there to organize the cultural program, projects and diverse happenings. During my first year in die Bäckerei I met many creative and supportive people who inspired me to invest in my biggest passion – music – and to begin to create music professionally. Although, I started in a rather mellow singer-songwriter corner, for the past years I’ve been getting more and more curious about electronic pop music and the never-ending possibilities of music production. Since then I’ve been performing as a solo electro pop artist, I’ve almost finished my second album ‘Lighter’ which is a collaboration with the local producer Christoph Holzknecht and it is partly self produced and recorded at home. And occasionally I hold workshops for other young ladies in music production on the software Ableton Live.
How did you feel during this year? How have coronavirus restrictions affected your work?
Most of the artists (and everyone else!) can agree that 2020 has been quite obscure. From losing your financial income to also just being confused and devastated and starting to doubt your contribution to the society.
Just a few days before the second lockdown I was lucky enough to play my last concert in a very beautiful old theater next to Trento. Before I went on one of the biggest stages I’ve had this year, I was crying. Out of happiness, out of joy, out of a sad revelation that this will probably be my last concert of the year. Performing and this genuine, raw emotional exchange that you as an artist have with your audience on the stage is like a drug. I guess, I did not fully acknowledge that, till it was gone. I am still grateful that as a solo act during the summer, September and October, I still had chances to perform. Playing for smaller, intimate venues and crowds has been a beautiful experience this year. You could really feel that people have realized how important culture is for them and that they are grateful for any, even the smallest, artistic input you can offer. This has also been the whole motivation behind our cultural work at die Bäckerei.
Has your view on working in the cultural sector changed due to the new circumstances?
Re-adjusting the program from week to week in order to fit the new regulations has been exhausting. Yet, it made us more creative – we had to find new cheeky ways of how to still offer something to the people, to connect people somehow, to stay up to date with what matters and what is needed – and at the same time providing them a safe and supportive environment.
How do you share your work with the world these days? What are you planning for the future?
My new album ‘Lighter’ was supposed to be finished already in March, but due to the whole Covid-19 madness and my sudden challenging financial situation it will be released next February. Before the album gets out, I am frequently releasing my new songs on Spotify and other streaming platforms and try to remind my followers about myself without playing physical concerts. While the album is now from my side finished and is just waiting for the last masters and printing, I am using this lockdown to write new material, which I am super excited about.
So just follow me on my social media, buy my singles and once in February the album is out, also, of course the album. And spread the word about your favorite artists and bands, so once the culture starts to flow again, we could all play many shows, release music and spread joy to the world!
Listen to BAIBA on Spotify:
BAIBA on Facebook
BAIBA on Youtube