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'It's Valuable to be Vulnerable:' Julien Baker on Connecting to Listeners, Spirituality

Jake Cunningham
Chromatic Publicity

It's been nearly a year since Julien Baker released her debut record Sprained Ankle, and she's already found a devoted and passionate following. In a matter of months, Baker went from a regular opening act to a consistent headliner, playing for audiences of individuals who each have a unique connection to her music.

Baker is only 20 years old, and her debut record resonates with her demographic deeply. She sings boldly of sadness, anxiety, and her spirituality. A devout Christian, Baker lets faith into her music openly. 

"People at shows will say 'I also struggle with spirituality or religion,'" she says. "It's cool to me to be able to have those conversations, not because I'm forcing them within a box of being the same as me, but I just like hearing that it is stimulating people's thoughts."

Baker realizes the impact her music has on her fans and encourages the open environment she has created. "If someone comes up to me and says 'That song really meant a lot to me' or 'I related to this song,' I absolutely will play it, even if it is a little embarrassing. They are very personal, but they're true."

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