Marcus Foster

Born and raised in southwest London, from a very early age Marcus Foster began

to explore and appreciate a wide range of musical genres. Foster´s childhood and

teenage years might seem to offer a few clues as to the wide source of narratives

that converge in his music. His poignant voice and the litany of his biographical

landmarks are all combined with a salient feature of his personality; namely, a

passionate curiosity for what creativity can conjure in terms of music, art and

storytelling.

Music and art served not only as a refuge from the everyday, but as interlocutors that

would help him to find his own voice and self expression. This is why throughout his

songs there is a broad spectrum of echoes and reference to artists as diverse as Van

Morrison, Bob Dylan, D´Angelo, Tom Waits, Prince, Otis Reading, Sister Rosetta

Tharpe and, more recently, St. Vincent.

At first sight it might seem counterintuitive to try to render a coherent whole out of

such a diverse array of influences. Yet a key drive behind Marcus´ work is a desire,

not only to avoid the comfort zone of recreating old sounds, but to challenge himself

in such a way that he can produce music and stories that, whilst in debt to the past,

have been yet unheard.

It is this creative disquiet that led him to juggle songwriting with his six year

long immersion in Fine Art studies. Marcus specialised in sculpture at Chelsea

College of Art and completed an MA in 2008 at the Royal College of Art, whilst

moonlighting as a singer in bars and clubs across London. It was at the end of

his studies for his MA at the Royal College of Art that Charles Saatchi discovered

his work, and promptly snapped up one of his creations. Saatchi was not the only

one who liked what he saw: his work was subsequently exhibited in Italy and

Greece.

After contributing one song to the first Twilight soundtrack in 2008, his popularity

with audiences in the U.S. and Europe developed exponentially, which helped

to vindicate his commitment to his craft. By the middle of 2010, Foster had

already racked up over a million hits on his MySpace page, while his Twitter

account was followed in the tens of thousands. As a testament to his constantly

growing demand in the in the U.S., Foster was recently invited to perform on the

Jimmy Fallon Show performing with The Roots. What's more, not only has he

had multiple tours on both sides of the Atlantic with great success, but he has

combined his time on the road with consistent work at the studio. In fact, it is in

the interaction with his audiences that he has found a reminder of music´s prime

value and a meeting ground where the unexpected takes place. This creative

collaboration has left clear marks on his subsequent recordings. Following his

first EP Tumble Down, Foster released his critically acclaimed debut album, titled

Nameless Path in 2011, which was produced by Ian Grimble (Communion). His

music has a timeless quality which, once appreciated, remains in the mind.

For 2012, Foster is about to release a new EP The Last House. The Last House

is a concise and exciting journey. Recorded in a barn in Sussex, England, it is his

most diverse release to date. In addition to a further series of European tours, he

will soon be opening for Michael Kiwanuka in the U.S, whilst completing songs

for his second album.

Several years ago musician and naturalist Sean Rowe walked out into the wilderness alone. He spent the next 24 days constructing shelter and foraging for food to eat. He would come away from the experience with the songs that would eventually comprise his dazzling debut album Magic. The San Francisco Chronicle described the record as "beautiful and haunting."

On his new album The Salesman and the Shark, Rowe has created a work that brilliantly reconfigures classic sounds in support of his intensely observational lyrics and the remarkable ever evolving vocals which inspired No Depression Magazine to succinctly state, "Man, that voice."

Rowe is a native of the lush rolling hills and history rich locale of upstate New York. He came of age listening to his father's record collection featuring The Beach Boys, Elvis Presley and more. But in his teen years it was soul and blues of John Lee Hooker, Muddy Waters, Marvin Gaye and Ray Charles that spoke to the bourgeoning singer-songwriter. "I remember thinking how magical it was that I could listen to that stuff over and over again and it would never fail to hit my spine," he says. "It was also cool to me that I felt like I found that stuff on my own. No one pointed me to it. I felt like it was mine."

Ruston Kelly

Ruston Kelly is a Nashville based singer songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. At only 23, Ruston is gaining great esteem as a sought after songwriter in the Nashville scene. As the former lead singer of Elmwood, Ruston has toured with the likes of O.A.R. and G. Love to name a few, and graced the stages of festivals such as Bonnaroo, Forecastle, and Wakarusa. In 2012 Ruston has toured with Truth & Salvage Co., The Lumineers, and Jackie Greene as a solo artist.

Ruston's life experiences can be felt in every word he writes. His ability to tell a story delivered by an unparalleled emotion and melodic vocal control leaves the listener hanging on every word.

$10.00 - $60.00

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Marcus Foster with Sean Rowe, Ruston Kelly

Tuesday, March 19 · Doors 6:00 PM / Show 7:00 PM at Varsity Theater