Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith

“I just follow what brings me joy.”

What was supposed to be a filmed conversation during Helsinkis Flow Festival ended up as a digital exchange of lots of questions and some answers – Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith definitely prefers to let the music speak. But who are we to complain as her new album “The Kid” is another magic journey into sound. 

Kaitlyn, you are known to have stage fright, right? How does this manifest?
No stage fright. A long time ago I made a decision that it was not a constructive use of time to have that emotion and haven’t felt it since. Only lots of excitement to play.

And it is also not true that you are afraid of a writers block?
Not afraid of a creative block, I don’t experience them. If I am not inspired to create, then I go do something else, go for a hike, go swimming, dance, etc…

Did your parents welcome your wish to be a musician right on?
My parents have always been very supportive and I am very grateful for this.

When did you feel it for the first time that music will be your thing?
I am still not fully settled in it, I just follow what brings me joy.

I just did a talk about the (future) influence of articial intelligence on the subject of the composer. Is this something you reflect about?
Not so much, a tool is just a means to create with – the main tool of a composer is their ear and what they want to say.

Kaitlyn, you collaborated with Suzanne Ciani on a release named „Sunergy“ for RVNG Intl.– this must have been like a dream come true for you as a longtime fan of her work, right?
It was such a wonderful experience.

As far as I know you two met at a dinner party in Bolinas and she offered you – coming in from your shared Buchla synthesizer works – the job as an assistent to help her preparing for her first concerts in two decades.
Could you describe how this lead to working together?
After becoming friends, my friend Matt Werth at RVNG proposed us doing a FRKWYS album together.

As you mention Matt – recently had the pleasure to interviewed him. Whats your thoughts on the label and how did you experience working?
It is such a great label and so was the experience. He does such a great job and I admire all the albums he puts out.

Talking about working with Suzanne Ciani, how much of a role model is she for you?
Suzanne is a very inspiring composer and person. I am very grateful that I have had a chance to get to know her.

How important is it to have the backing of a system like Ableton Live for your concerts?
I use Ableton and Protools for recording, performing, editing, mixing, etc… Depends on the sound you are trying o achieve and for what purpose… I don’t have access to a completely analog way of recording, so using my computer is what is available to me.

Suzanne for example does not work with Ableton, does she?
She works with a digital performer – another DAW.

Did you also have the luck to meet Don Buchla?
I met him briefly. Wonderful person.


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