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Thor Harris is a percussionist, master carpenter (he built his own house), plumber, painter, mental health advocate, and once almost ran for Governor of Texas. He was the percussionist in Swans, Shearwater, and The Angles of Light. He has played and toured with countless other acts including Bill Callahan, Devendra Banhart, Lisa Germano, and more. He now has his own project called Thor & Friends, drawing on minimalist composers such as Terry Riley and Steve Reich and atmospheric creators like Brian Eno, Aphex Twin, among others.

Halfway through our conversation, his friend Jordan Geiger of the band Hospital Ships joined us. We candidly discussed depression, happiness, the music industry, day jobs, making money, sustaining creativity, and the value of spending time with a dying person. I love the authenticity of this conversation and hope you do too! Listen above or on iTunes or Spotify.

Show notes

In this episode, we discuss:

  • Depression and the value of speaking about your experiences
  • Anti-depressants, other treatments and their effects
  • Where to find support if you’re experiencing depression
  • Thor’s musical background
  • How he introduced himself to Swans via a letter
  • The value of networking and making connections
  • Learning how to fix things
  • Thor and Jordan’s day jobs and how they make ends meet
  • Knowing what to charge for services
  • Surviving on little money
  • Why the process is better than the result
  • Playing music as a spiritual practice
  • The value of spending time with someone who’s dying
  • Their individual relationships with the internet
  • Quality over quantity when it comes to consumption
  • Where Thor and Jordan find happiness
  • The role of music blogs for a musician today
  • Make the art you want to see in the world
  • Why every young musician should learn to use spreadsheets

Resources mentioned in this episode:

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