What Now with Simo

by Simo Sakari Aaltonen

A freeform, wide-ranging podcast by writer and composer Simo Sakari Aaltonen on any topics foremost on his mind at the time of recording. The seasons are also collected in book form. Some favourite topics include creativity and all the arts — music, films, screenplays, fiction, poetry, comics, games, comedy, and everything in between. Messages from listeners welcomed for possible inclusion in an episode. Note that sending a rec ...   ...  Read more

Podcast episodes

  • Season 5

  • 5.14 4th Anniversary Special: Passages Dark and Light II

    5.14 4th Anniversary Special: Passages Dark and Light II

    24 March 2024 — Passages Dark and Light II: Passages 1–43

  • 5.13 In the Dream Spa Part Under Construction


    5.13 In the Dream Spa Part Under Construction


    Friday, 9 February 2024 — Table of contents not available for personal reasons

  • 5.12 Rendezvous at the Dream Café


    5.12 Rendezvous at the Dream Café


    A place of the imagination — Bar / café — Still under construction — My music in the background — Albums and singles — The person in charge of the music — Passages Dark and Light — Tales from the North, Book I — Early Music Archive — “Land of Youth & Beauty” — 1 January 2024 — David Lynch’s weather reports — “January one” — Being and becoming yourself — Finding your own things — Patreon plan — Seeking support — Possible future episodes to help people sleep — Sleep issues — Music intended to be calming and soothing — May not work for people with troubled, restless minds — Too easy to tune out — Occupying your attention — Season 3 of Twin Peaks — Freed from anguish for a time — An array of elements arranged in such a way that it alters your state of mind or the way you are feeling — What art can be — We may remember from childhood — Discerning — “Critical thinking” — A lot of my early music — Music system glitch — New stage a few years ago — Directness — “Turtle Morning” — American Indian ponderosa pine flute — Had with me on my travels — Start of the COVID epidemic in 2020 — Dropouts part of this piece (“Stream No. 1”) — Thump — The way I play this flute — Voice out of practice — Plans for this year — Backlog — Started putting out my own creations only in 2019 — At Dawn: Early Short Stories — Creation of more than 20 years — The most central things — Fiction, poetry, music, filmed works — Reading of Lovecraft poem “The Garden” — Early work on four games — Started focusing on my own creative works — Everything a result of long, careful work — Documenting — Preserving the magic and surprises — Responsibility of artists — Everything affects us one way or another — Fiction and nonfiction — The core things — Art & Love series — Dreams after a bad day — Dangerous state — 1) Grisly dream — Place of several rooms — Warning — Someone was going to chop up a body — Podcast Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend — Was able to turn and move the “camera” elsewhere — 2) Bicycling around an amalgam of places where I’ve lived — Lake shores — Causeway — Bridges — Rain — 3) Meeting in a tunnel system — Brief exchange — Took off jogging down the long tunnel towards the light — Backpack — Felt light, healthy, fit — An uncommon habit developed a long time ago — Sneakers — Reflected real life — Underpass free of ice and snow — Great things about Conan O’Brien — Jim Downey — Saturday Night Live — Scene from Billy Madison (1995) — Adam Sandler — “Everyone in this room is now dumber…” — Norm Macdonald and crafting perfect writing — “Weekend Update” — Objectively good writing and editing — One word created a little vignette or story — What makes us laugh is separate from what we may “approve of” — Close to closing time — Test crowd — Figuring out the configuration of the place — A creative space — Thanks to certain special people

  • 5.11 Summer Day, Rainy Night

    5.11 Summer Day, Rainy Night

    PART 1: SUMMER DAY: One last summer day — Boat on the shore — Did go rowing — Times I had the beach to myself — Later realised why — Water just right — Giving thanks for the beautiful day — Phone alarm — Many motivations — Boat drifting — Oh, a fish | PART 2: RAINY NIGHT: Rainy night on the balcony — Most of the lake recording unusable — Something discussed in season 1 — Artist Curt Swan — Known for his work on the superhero Superman — Feels strange to be talking about this again — A later realisation — Swan was pushed aside — Had to happen — Necessary change — Shifted position — This character — So strange I ever said it — Like another person — A personal reason — A brief good period for those comics that coincided with my teens — Intricate continuity — For the first time a sense of evolving into something more — “Mature” — Disastrous results — Wrong turn — Misguided — Not the right place for those kinds of stories — Simply had some fond memories — Sweet ideals — Being a decent, even a really good person — Intentionally misleading covers — Acknowledging my changed views — Another reason to be thinking of change — Too static — Lacking magic — Things that can make you feel good every day — An insidious way for a person’s life to become less beautiful and treasurable — Times of staleness — Even when at the same time creating meaningful things — Why I’m here — Always different levels — Not rejuvenating, revivifying — Being able to wake up refreshed and recovered — Reasons why it may not happen — Sleep deprivation and illnesses — Life becoming more narrow and restricted — Freedom and new possibilities — Change becomes more difficult, if not impossible, the longer the static circumstances continue — Consciously shaking things up — Realising the need for change — Amassing more and more — Then started getting rid of things — Oppressed by all the stuff — Not giving me anything anymore — Seller’s tables at Finncon — Long time ago — Sold most of what I had — Happier afterwards — The horror of hoarding — A psychological problem — Mental health issue — Can be extremely damaging — Becoming encased in your collection of belongings — “Will I really miss something that I’m now getting rid of?” — No — That voice should be ignored — Life became lighter — Collecting as a form of hoarding — Seeking security by owning physical things — I love having room rather than stuff — Not enough life for any human being to keep returning to thousands of things — Dust — Mould — The feeling of being normally healthy — Feeling good about being alive and able to breathe easily — Not something to take for granted — Some inner journeys are delusions — Good health is luxurious — Young people’s beliefs that they’ll always find meaning in the things they currently do — Happiness not in things themselves — No reason to keep a thing anymore — A lighter life — In the here and now — The future is not guaranteed — Wishes for insight and ability to make changes

  • 5.10 Danger of Triviality, Creative Practicalities, and New Music

    5.10 Danger of Triviality, Creative Practicalities, and New Music

    “Season 5 Opening” (@ 0:00) — Second episode of the day — Recorded on different dates — Closer to the mic again — Nicer listening experience — Lake episodes — Drifting ever so slowly — Without larger goals, danger of falling into triviality — Dreams, aspirations — Not selfish things — Couples bickering in grocery stores over trivial things — Triviality has taken over their lives — Many different forms — Obsessions — Hypochondria — Can be learned from others — Empathy for people with this problem — Be careful — Preoccupation with quirks — Irritability, pettiness — Policing other people’s behaviour — Bike example — Rageful people — Eliminating ways of wasting time — One way to avoid this fate — Lost human potential — Being creative — Numerous ways — My mother’s creativity — She made our whole yard bloom — Kamikaze motorboat — Album Early Music Archive — 50 early tracks — Wide variety of styles — American Indian ponderosa pine flute — My way of playing it — Lovely mellow quality — On Bandcamp, streaming, and for download — Praise for Bandcamp — Great way to support artists — Ways to help artists create more — More income from creative work equals more creative work possible — And faster — Reacting, sharing, word of mouth — Adding tracks to playlists — One thing leading to another — Chains of events — Simply doing my work and putting out information about it — Limits of what artists themselves can do — The rest depends on others — Not becoming an advertising agency — The people I hope to reach — My first single — “Land of Youth & Beauty” — “Lake Presentation” video (2022) for the book Land of Youth & Beauty: Early Poems — Vision of a book in a lake — Recap of the creation story — The vision happened again with the book with me — Sunlight shimmering — No special effects — The life of an independent creator — Thousands of small steps building towards larger goals and dreams — Albums and a single — Further along on the path — The books of short stories and poems — Cornerstones — Following natural schedules — Pierre Estève: “Time is on our side.” — Faith in time — Drifting and talking — Beach all to myself for swimming — Water the perfect temperature — PayPal donations possible via my site — Calling millionaires and billionaires — Everything helps — The bottom line of how much one can do in a lifetime — Updating my site — New functionality — Picture of all my works so far — Always up to date — More sheet music — Interpretations always different — The way lakes and seas and waves are — No indications of dynamics — Tales from the North, Book I — Same for tempi — Apology for not having yet continued the serialised discussion of Andrew Mellor’s The Northern Silence — Peter Falk’s memoirs — Reminder to myself — “Season 5 Closing” (@ 30:06)