Monday, February 9, 2009

nooka creative x-change: kate simko

recognizing that creative people find inspiration from multiple sources, matthew waldman conducts mini interviews to hopefully gain insight into the creative processes of the artists he meets.

can you give me a short bio?
"...Kate’s music occupies the space between techno and house with an international voice that sets it apart. The artist in question is something of a complete package, a classically trained pianist who found herself at Techno’s doorstep during Midwest rave’s heyday in the mid 90’s. A student in music technology at Northwestern, Kate later ventured out to continue her studies in Santiago, Chile and a start a successful project with Andres Bucci under the name Detalles, marking her entrance into the emerging new techno scene. Playing events such as Detroit’s Movement Festival, Decibel, and MUTEK have steadily built Kate’s reputation and her Chicago night Wake Up! has hosted everyone from John Tejada to Mikael Stavostrand, earning a “best regular club night” nod in the weekly publication New City. Kate is a music lifer, committed to the craft and impressing the more savvy critics one record at a time."

i find most artists are very good at talking about their inspirations and moreover, influences. what was your motivation to continue with music and what continues to do so?
Since I made a transition from playing classical piano pieces to making my own music, music turned into a quest to define my own sound. It motivates me the most when people enjoy my music. That, combined with a desire to express myself and grow as an artist, inspires me to keep going.

the digital revolution has reduced the real estate given to visuals for marketing a musical artist. how important is 'design' to your work as a musician?
Design has always been important to me. I've always been involved in the creative direction of the design for the events I've organized and past CD / vinyl releases. Ideally, a musical release should be an aesthetic package complete with tasteful design.. not much you can do about that with digital releases, which is a negative of that medium, for sure.

what does 'nooka' mean to you?
Nooka means sleek style outside of the box. The nooka way of marking time is creative and inspiring. I hadn't worn a watch in years until I found Nooka recently.

what's your next project?
Right now I'm in Buenos Aires recording an album. As far as releases, Ghostly is putting out an ambient film soundtrack of mine in the next couple months, and Spectral Sound is set to release my next 12" of dance music.

the nooka kate proudly wears is the blue aluminum zot available here.

learn more about kate's releases here.

comicon nyc 2009

friday afternoon, i took most of my staff to comicon thinking it'd be good research for our ongoing development of the nookanooka character. also, we wanted to meet-up with friend, jeremy of mad toy design as he was doing a signing. his space at my plastic heart was mobbed, so we didn't get to talk much, but it was nice running into some people i knew and also to catch up with the guys at giant robot who sell nooka at their shops. alex got to hug the ugly doll mascot, see foto.

i have to be honest, i find it difficult to accept a so-called trade show that charges so much money to get in and 99% of the booths are basically stores selling goods. it's like macy's charging an admission. it's cute though, and a cultural phenomenom that's best experienced in san diego for the much much bigger comicon there.

as we didn't get a chance to talk, i met up with jeremy for lunch on sunday. so overall, a comicon-themed weekend.