MISSION SPOTLIGHT After escaping a dry, fundamentalist town in eastern Washington, three of the members of Mission Spotlight moved to the big city (Portland, Ore.) where they met two bourbon-drinking atheists who would help them fulfill their dream of starting a country/indie/folk band.
The band’s sound is built around singer/songwriter Kurt Foster’s baritone voice. Foster grew up in the church in Southern California. His musical education was a a mix of hymns, Joy Division on the radio and the Buck Owens and Gram Parsons songs family friend and country musician Jann Browne taught him.
After moving to the Northwest in 1990 and playing in several indie rock bands, Foster’s divorce helped him find focus in the stories he wanted to tell in his music.
Once the alcohol haze of those years lifted, Mission Spotlight was born. The band explores the classic country and western themes of love and loss and mixes them with the post-punk rock sounds they grew up on. Sad stories, soaring vocal melodies and dramatic guitar hooks. It’s more Magnolia Electric Company than George Jones.
Mission Spotlight performs regularly at the Pacific Northwest’s finest venues. They have been privileged to play with greats like Sturgill Simpson, American Aquarium, and Lindi Ortega.
The band’s first two albums (Everything That Floats and Keep The Good Ones Close) were recorded with the legendary Larry Crane at Jackpot! Studios.
Mission Spotlight’s newest album (Remember The Time) finds the band collaborating with one of their musical heroes, Jason Lytle (Grandaddy). The band met Lytle through mutual friend Howe Gelb and quickly bonded over a love of the wilderness and early country music.
The new album (coming in Sept. 2018) was recorded at Lytle’s home studio in Modesto, Calif. and The Map Room in Portland.