A couple weeks ago, I had a chance to get to know Dutch recording artist, Lodewijk Fluttert, who performs under the name Bakermat, at Bestival Toronto. Most known for his platinum album, Vandaag, and his track that became an anthem of summer 2014, “One Day (Vandaag),” Bakermat is doing what he loves and doesn’t really care if you like it or not. We caught up with Fluttert before his set at Bestival and talked about his musical background, staying true to the art and how playing at Coachella would be a dream come true.
Jackie Willson: Let’s start with something basic – where did your love for music come from?
Lodewijk Fluttert: I listen to a lot of different genres. I started doing this thing where I listen to dance records and jazz records at the same time and I combined them. I couldn’t find any jazz or blues elements in dance music, so I started doing it on my own.
JW: How old were you when you started doing that?
LF: I think twenty.
JW: Did your parents influence you at all?
LF: My mom is an opera singer, and she taught me classical music. So I have that in my collection, like every piece of opera music.
JW: Would you say that’s where it all started?
LF: I guess, when I was young I didn’t appreciate opera music at all. I hated it, but now I love it. My dad was a big fan of soul music, like James Brown. James Brown was the first record that he showed me.
JW: Do you still have it?
LF: No, I don’t. I am going to go buy his record.
JW: You tend to sample a lot, where do the samples come from – live musicians, records…?
LF: YouTube. I browse through YouTube and go to, like, page thirteen where nobody goes. I type in, like “rare gospel”, and you will find something, like, with three views, and that’s it. I try to find the original record, buy it, and then sample it.
JW: You’ve said before your dream is to tour with a full orchestra…
LF: Yes, I did this in Europe already, in Paris and London. For the U.S. it’s complex for me because it is such a distance. If I am going to be playing here, it takes a lot of organzing because it is a seven man band. I am working on it, and I really want to do it. I have to select the right festivals for it, I really want to.
JW: How is the tour going so far?
LF: So far so good. The travel was good, the plane ride took me about eight hours.
JW: Where are you going next?
LF: California, to Palm Springs.
JW: Have you ever been to Coachella?
LF: Never. I do really want to go.
JW: It would be great to play there.
LF: Yeah, it would be awesome. A dream come true.
JW: Are you excited for your upcoming set, back here in Canada?
LF: Yes, I’m so excited. I love the crowd in Canada, especially in Toronto and Montreal, which are bit like Europe. I am really familiar with playing in Europe, I love it, it feels like home.
JW: I was having a conversation recently with an artist about how much Toronto loves music and really supports their artists.
LF: Yes, they come for the music. That is what I love. It is exactly the same in Amsterdam, they come for the music and they know all the tracks.
JW: Do you remember having a moment, if you had one, when you were like “Damn, I guess I’m famous now”?
LF: Umm, that’s a good question. I guess for me, I was like fourteen and I already watched a video of Laidback Luke, you know, he was already doing this stuff back then, and dance music was not that big. He was touring the world, and I saw that and said, I want that.
JW: So was there a point where you thought that you made it, or are you still working towards something more?
LF: Yeah, I think I had those moments. These are pretty good questions, I was just going to go on autopilot. But yeah, I have definitely had those moments, I’ve done a tour in Europe with all the big cities like Paris and London and all the capitals. It was huge venues and I was really nervous about selling out. I was like “I can’t do this yet, I’m just internet famous.” But it sold out, like big time. In Paris there was even a line, the police had to come and swipe people off the streets. That was when I was like, “All right, this is pretty good.”
JW: Are you working on anything new right now?
LF: I am coming out with an album in September, I have some singles and remixes coming up for the summer. Basically, I learned in life, and it’s very deep, but it’s true, you have to do whatever you want. You have to do something, I don’t have a grand plan for life, I make the tracks that I like and that’s it. I will see how it goes.
JW: You really need to believe in your music, and a lot of people hesitate and don’t do that.
LF: Yeah, exactly. I had those moments. Now I’m like “Fuck it, I’m going to release whatever I want.”
JW: When did those moments where you were unsure happen?
LF: Right after Vandaag, the IT record. It was number one in Europe. I thought, “Okay, people want that, they want another Vandaag.” I got that a lot and I didn’t release anything because of that. But now, I don’t care.
JW: Do you find that your music suffered because of that? Because you didn’t believe in it as much?
LF: Maybe, I don’t think so. I would never release something that I don’t agree with. At the moment, I think I am really free in what I do. I really don’t care. I am confident about what I like. If people don’t like it, I don’t really give a shit, because this is what I want.
JW: Out of curiosity, what do you plan to do with a degree in psychology, is that a backup plan?
LF: Yeah, I didn’t have any plans for my life. I just started studying psychology. It was never my idea to become a full time musician and in my third year of studying I was bored. I took a semester off, went into stand-up comedy. That went pretty well, but not as good as I thought. So then I thought, “Okay, what’s going to be the next challenge? Let’s make some music.” I downloaded software, made music that week, put it on YouTube and it kind of became a hit.
JW: Ok, so no psychology then?
LF: Well, I am still studying psychology officially, I am just not attending. I want to finish it, but I’m not going to do anything with it. This is the best job ever, I would not want to be a psychologist.
photos by Erik Shaw