I point out in this interview of White Lake area musician Tommy Foster that when I first met him when he was a teen, the first thought that came into my mind was that he would have a unique life path ahead of him.Not only has he confirmed this by his choice of career, but also when we met for the interview. He suggested sitting in the “seat” of a huge tree. (I had thought we would sit in the gazebo by White Lake.) Neither of us could make the climb, so we ended up standing in front of the massive trunk. No one else so far has suggested we climb into a tree for an interview!
I was truly honored to interview Tommy. He is one of our area’s treasures, a homegrown musician, beloved by his hometown folks and well beyond. He is known for being part of Foster and Popps, the Foster Kids, and being a solo performer for over a quarter of a century. He currently plays with the FAN Club, whose original members include: Tommy, Justin Avdek, and Scott Nesbit (FAN --from their last names). Additional members are Ezekiel Kinney, Eric Engblade, Rich King, John King, Mike Lynch, Mark Lavengood, Drew Howard, Chas Millican, Everett Domeier, and Jeffrey Niemeier. He is also a former member of the Echoes of Pink Floyd production.Tommy says one influence has been his mother, Virginia Foster, who played the violin. He’s painfully honest when he relays how he was flunking out of college and a guidance counselor helped him to determine his interests. The results indicated he should be a mortician or musician. True . . . He took music theory, found it held his interest, and the rest is history.Tommy sings and plays many instruments, including acoustic and electric guitar, lap steel guitar, and he dabbles in pedal steel guitar, piano, mandolin, and bass guitar. He has been influenced by country music, blues, folk, bluegrass, R & B, rock, jazz, classical, and even heavy metal.Life as a full-time musician isn’t easy. It involves lots of time on the road. One week, Tommy might be in Chelsea, a few days later, back here in Whitehall, for a concert at the Montague bandshell like he was last week. A lot of perseverance.His advice to aspiring musicians is likewise, to persevere. Keep the music going, and work at whatever job you have to as you build a musical career.You can find Tommy Foster or the FAN Club on Facebook - Click on image below. As I always tell folks, if you have not heard Tommy Foster yet for some strange reason, you should -- right away!
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