Glen Foster

Glen Foster

Lyrics lament leaving

NANAIMO - The Glen Foster Group launches its latest album at The Vault Cafe Saturday (Jan. 23).

Sometimes leaving a comfortable place in a person’s life can cause pain.

Occasionally it leads to adventure and a change for the better.

The theme of leaving places or people behind is explored on the Glen Foster Group’s latest album, Leaving The Lagoon.

Foster, lead vocalist and guitarist, was inspired by his canoe and kayak trips and travels on Cortes Island and in Powell River.

“A lot of the songs refer to being out on the water,” said Foster. “The beauty of nature and being out there to find a place of inner peace and harmony with nature is quite inspirational.”

The flow of waves, rivers or the currents of lakes also inspire Foster’s lyrics.

“You get the rhythm of the waves, which is like the music, it has a rhythm to it,” he said.

Over his travels, Foster collected pieces of information, such as interesting place names that stuck out. Places like the Jail House Café, in Powell River, are some of the “funny little names of places” Foster collected. When it came to writing the songs he used this information, picked up his guitar and came up with a melody to compose his lyrics.

“The lyrics are an important aspect of my music. A lot of them tell stories and talk about situations and descriptions,” said Foster.

Telling a story is an essential part of Foster’s art. The latest work is a concept album, an album that expresses a theme.

“The lagoon kind of symbolizes your comfort zone or happy place and then leaving, you need to get out of the comfort zone or you’re forced to leave,” said Foster.

Foster said leaving that comfortable place can allow people to find adventure and the results can be either good or bad.

Foster is influenced by different musical styles. It’s reflected on the latest album. He collaborated with various musicians including Caleb McIntyre, who plays bagpipes; Marty Steele, who plays piano and vocalists Susan Boland and Marg Foster.

Other musicians he worked with on the album include Pat Shonwise, the Glen Foster group bass guitarist; Glenn Olsen, on drums; Gerry Barnum, Steve Eakins and Dwight Gray.

Foster said he loves collaborating with artists because they each bring a different perspective to the music he might not have thought of while creating it.

He’s been a musician for more than 30 years. It’s the connection with people he enjoys, both fans and other musicians.

Musical influences include Bob Dylan and Neil Young for their use of lyrical stories on their albums. Vocal influences include The Beach Boys.

And one of Nanaimo’s great guitar players, David Gogo, influences his guitar skills. Foster actually taught Gogo guitar in the past.

The Glen Foster Group is hosting a CD release party for Leaving The Lagoon with special guest artist Mark Crissinger this Saturday (Jan. 23) 9 p.m. to midnight at The Vault Café. Admission is $5.

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