"Medicine Man"

"Medicine Man"
An interview with Foster before performing their newest single.
"Medicine Man"
An interview with Foster before performing their newest single.

Foster -- a four-piece band hailing from Atlanta, Georgia -- pits alternative indie against funk, blues and singer-songwriter stylistic elements in order to give listeners a vibe to chill, groove or move to. Foster recently held a show on the Purgatory stage at The Masquerade, which we at Hand Me the Aux had the opportunity to attend. The band was promoting the release of their new single “Medicine Man”. They shared the stage with three incredible openers: Youngest, Honey Hips and Motherborg, all of whom contributed to an unforgettable night and each brought different energies to the stage. Altogether, this medley of sounds -- from four, very different but very artistic groups -- provided for a night of stand-up talent and even better music.

Foster was originally a duo made up of friends and coworkers Taylor Foster (vocals) and Tee Gottselig (guitar), but has now become a cohesive unit that burst onto the scene in 2015. Since their duet beginnings, they have added Trenton Largin on bass and Jim Dykstra on the drums. Each artist brings their own flavor and talent to the pot: Taylor is a standout female vocalist with notable and obvious influences from Amy Winehouse; Tee, with his acoustic guitar employed as his voice, adds twangy guitar chords sure to get you moving; Trenton drops an undeniably mean bassline, and Jim, who plays a simple yet refined set of drums, has a talent that brings the melodies together. Their talents individually do not outshine one another, but rather enhance their potential as a group and show the best of their already-existent abilities.

Foster debuted their single “Medicine Man” to an ecstatic and eager crowd of local fans and supporters, which shows that this group is definitely already headed in the right direction.

Not only are they talented but gracious, and we were able to be able to sit down with the group and get an interview with them before the madness ensued and they hit the stage. You can find it below:

Rogers (from HMTA): How long has the band been around?

Taylor: The band has been around officially for three and a half years. It started out with just Tee and I, guitar and vocals. When we went to record an album, a half a year later, we actually gained Trent as our bassist and another drummer, and we went from there.

Are you guys originally from Atlanta?

Taylor: Absolutely

Awesome. So is this you guys’ first time playing at the Masquerade? If so, do you play here a lot?

Tee: Yeah, yeah, we’ve been here before, I will say this is the first time we’ve played “Purgatory”, we have played “Hell” before.

Taylor: This show has been advertised much better and bigger show than before, so we’re really excited.

So this show is special correct? I hear its symbolic for a single you guys are dropping tonight, what’s the single called again?

Taylor: Medicine Man.

Will it be available on streaming services?

Taylor: Yes! It will be available on all of our platforms, Google, Bandcamp, Spotify.

Tee: Tonight, however, it will be available first through our Bandcamp.

I wanna switch it up a little bit, and kind of ask who do you draw your musical influences from? And what made you want to start a band?

Trenton: I have a lot of roots in like punk and emo music, and I was actually at Georgia State for a little while and was involved in the Jazz program. I left school to just pursue music and now I’m here. So punk, metal, R&B , Jazz, stuff like that.

Jim: I listened to a lot of stuff growing up, Jazz, emo, punk , hip-hop, R&B, and now that I’ve gotten older, I’ve really started listening to a lot J-Dilla.

Taylor: I have been listening to Amy Winehouse for forever, and Janis Joplin, Florence and the Machine, just really powerful female vocalists have been my inspiration for a really long time now. I was also raised on gospel so I started there, when I was only allowed to listen to Christian contemporary music.

Tee: For me, I drew a lot from “Steel Pulse”, uh, reggae. Got a lot from older jazz, Phoebe Snow. My biggest influences for performing, is probably James Taylor. He’s probably one of my all time favorites.

I love all of your tastes.

Taylor: Yeah, we’re quite the eclectic group.

Where was the first place you ever played?

Taylor: It was this rinky dink Mellow Mushroom, out in Snellville, Georgia. Our old boss, who we’ve known for years, gave us our first gig, as a duet, but we had already formed our full band but we had yet to start playing as a full band until about a year and a half ago. But since then, its been all four of us together.

How did you guys meet Trent and Jim?

Taylor: We actually were scheduled to play a show in Athens, and I called Ari, our manager, and told her we’d be playing a show there. We met up and she brought along Trent, who she’d also been playing music with in Athens, and my first impression upon hearing him was the he was a dope bassist.

Tee: That’s actually an understatement. He was playing “Primest” on his bass in the parking lot and I thought to myself, Hmmm, you’re better than I thought you were. From there, we asked him to play on our record “ Lost in the Garden”and he came in and he absolutely dominated in the studio. In fact, I think he was about 17 at the time. Within forty five minutes to an hour six tracks were done. From there, it sort of progressed to where it is now. Jim on the other hand, we met recently through Trent. They were playing in another band together, in which things were sort of moving in another direction as a unit. We needed another spot filled, Jim came in and worked his tail off, and has done an absolutely phenomenal job for us. From what it feels like, THIS is Foster for the time being. In the near future, we may be looking at gaining a lead guitarist, but we won’t be pushing the envelope, we’ve got a great chemistry between us.

“Foster” as a band has been really gaining steam at the moment right now.

Taylor: Yes. I say, this past year, we’ve really gotten serious and a lot more professional. We played here a year ago, And it’s a really great benchmark for us. We released our album, “Lost in the Garden”, and we’ve played at several other venues since then, a festival in Duluth, and we’ve done a great bit of things and grown a LOT. It’s great to be back actually, and release a single, in our opinion, that’s even better than our previous material, in terms of mixing, mastering and production--

Tee: --and quality--

Taylor: --to sort of represent ourselves to the masses.

John (from HMTA): What is next for Foster?

Taylor: Probably a lot of writing, so that we can follow up with more music to follow this single.

Rogers: Well, I, as well as us from Hand Me The Aux, really appreciate your time and giving us this opportunity to sit down, and just pick your minds and see what Foster is really about. I look forward to hearing more content from you all as you continue to grow and do marvelous things.

Listen to their new single on Bandcamp, and check out their Spotify page.

Photographed by John Robertson, Lead Photographer/Videographer Hand Me The Aux, LLC