Ruthie Foster

An expressive vocalist, whose Americana mix includes a lot of blues, gospel, and soul. Ruthie Foster, a Texas-based singer/songwriter, has an expressive voice that has earned her comparisons with Ella Fitzgerald and Aretha Franklin. Her repertoire includes gospel, blues, jazz, folk and soul, and her live performances can be transformative. Foster was born in Gause, Texas. It is a small community in the Brazos valley southeast of Dallas. She was fascinated by music as a child and she listened to all the country and pop songs on the radio. She was already a soloist in her local choir at the age of 14, and knew that music would be her main focus. Her studies in music and audio engineering were the focus of her studies when she moved to Waco to study at a community college. Foster also started a blues band and learned how to command the stage in Texas’ rough bars. Foster joined the Navy to explore the world and was soon singing in Pride, a Navy band which played funk and pop hits at recruiting drives in the southeast U.S. Foster arrived in New York City after her tour of duty. She regularly plays at various folk venues. Atlantic Records offered Foster a recording contract, believing they had a budding pop star. But Foster was not interested in going that route. She preferred to explore the American roots music that had been a part of her childhood. Foster returned to Texas after her mother became ill in 1993. While caring for her mother, Foster began work as a camera operator, and as a production assistant at College Station’s TV station. Foster self-released Full Circle in 1997. She then teamed up with Blue Corn Music to release Crossover in 1999, Runaway Soul 2002, Stages in 2004 and Stages in 2008. Blue Corn also released Heal Yourself (2006), Ruthie Foster (2008), Stages (featuring a number of live tracks) and The Truth According To Ruthie Foster which were recorded at Ardent Studios, Memphis in 2009. Foster was a captivating live performer who continued to tour. She wow audiences with her powerful voice, stylistic range and vocals. The concert CD/DVD set, Live at Antone’s, was recorded from Blue Corn in 2011. Let It Burn was her second studio album, and it was nominated in 2013 for the Best Blues Album Grammy. Foster won the Koko Taylor Award as Traditional Blues Female Artists of the Year 2012 and the DVD of The Year for Live At Antone’s 2012. Foster changed her approach with Promise of a Brand New Day in 2014. This record was produced by Meshell Negeocello. With Daniel Barrett, a producer and a group of sympathetic musicians, she recorded 2017’s Joy Comes back in Austin, Texas. Allmusic

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