Unlike many emergent artists in traditional music, Jack Foster's music does what it says on the tin. His début solo album An Hour Before the Dawn mines a deep vein of Scottish folk music, and doesn't dress it up in the clothes of any other genre.
Raised in the Scottish Borders, a part of the country renowned for its ballad tradition, Jack Foster's strong affinity with traditional Scottish song can be traced to his earliest days. His music remains rooted in the rich cultural and natural landscape around Kelso and the banks of the River Tweed. After moving to Edinburgh (via an abortive attempt working as a DJ in Kirkaldy, and a near fatal stint in Berwick-upon-Tweed) he quickly become immersed in the folk scene of Scotland's capital. As the driving force behind the popular folk music radio station The Garden Sessions, he dedicated himself to creating quality coverage of the burgeoning Scottish folk scene for over three years.
However it wasn't long before Foster dusted off a cheap guitar, tuned it down to DADGAD and began contributing to the folk scene as a performer. From 2005 he was regularly belting out two part harmonies with long time friend and fellow borderer Tom Harland. As 'Lords of the Bothy' this duo recorded the (never released) Chronicles of the Bothy, in addition to a slightly over ambitious series of concept albums now lost to posterity. Perhaps more importantly, as 'Lords of the Bothy', they began playing regular gigs in Edinburgh's award winning live music pub The Royal Oak.
Foster continues a five year residency on Saturday nights at this venue, doggedly helping to maintain its status as the capital's premier howf for singers of folk music. He also plays the nearby Captain's Bar every Tuesday. A folk singer's folk singer, Foster lives and breathes the traditional music scene of his native land, working as a sound engineer for countless folk events and his dedication is well known amongst the cream of Edinburgh's folk talent.
If you like your folk raw, well sourced and served up with a healthy seasoning of Scots lyricism, then Jack Foster's back to basics approach is for you.
If you get a chance, go and look at these websites:
'An Hour Before The Dawn' is available to buy online for a mere £10, no CD collection is complete without it (well, some might be, but will yours?)