Cassie Baker: Winner of Rockquest Coke Original Song Award National Finals 2004
There’s a lot been said about Rockquest so far …
but not much about Cassie Baker from Rangi Ruru which
strikes us as quite strange really coz we believe that
down in the Antipodes we'll be hearing again … and
again … from this dedicated & determined musician/songwriter
- So, tell us about your winning song
- It’s called Fallen. I guess you could describe it as kinda percussive/acoustic rock and it’s about a relationship. Most of the stuff I'm writing at the moment is around relationships. I had a vague idea in my head but it didn't get written until 2 nights before the competition on the Wednesday - and the heats were on the Friday! I played it to my friends and they told me what sounded okay and what didn't. It’s a bit different, I guess, coz the chorus and verse are in totally different keys.
- What comes first for you - the music or the lyrics
- Definitely the music. You have an idea and then start strummin' along and some of it sounds good, you know? I also play the drums and piano too which helps a lot.
- And you performed as a soloist
- Yeah, with my guitar. There were only another 3 solo acts in the heats. All the rest were bands.
- How did it feel up there
- Kinda scary but I'm into drama as well as music and love performing. I had a lot of friends in the front row so I just concentrated on them and the rest of the audience was pretty much in the dark! Plus, I've been in Rockquest a few times before so I had
some idea of what to expect.
- Why did you go solo
- Coz I had no other choice! I've been in three previous
bands but couldn't get one together for this contest,
so just went for it. I'm still keen to get a band
together though. I did a recording session with
my music teacher and he’s set up a jammin' session
with a drummer for the jazz school but I don't want
to play jazz all the time.
- How long have you been writing & playing
- About ten years I guess.
- Anything else you're keen on
- Music’s my thing, it really is. I'm hoping to do a contemporary music course down in Otago next year and I can't wait. Just to hang around with people who feel the same way as I do, you know? I'm also into sports - netball, snowboarding, tennis and we're rehearsing the school production of Les Mis* at the moment. I'm playing Fantine.
- Favourite albums
- That’s hard. Um … Liquid Skin/Gomez and probably Brushfire Fairy Tales/Jack Johnson
- Has any music particularly influenced you
- A lot of the older stuff, especially the Beatles' Sgt Peppers.
- Do you ever get time to relax
- Not really! Can't remember the last time I read a book or watched a vid. When I do relax I like to listen to music.
- What’s the best advice anyone’s ever given you?
- My dad w'out a doubt. He’s always said that you've gotta do what you've gotta do. And it’s true.
- And for the future
- Well, I'd love to do something with my music of course and maybe use my drama too - music vidz would be fantastic but failing all that … I guess I can always be a snowboard instructor (and out comes that lovely ironic grin of hers) … it wouldn't be a bad way to earn a living either!
* Les Mis will run from 30 July to 5 August at Rangi Ruru High School. Tickets from $15 - $30