Buck Ford holds true to pure country as defined by musical legends George Strait, Merle Haggard, George Jones and Craig Morgan. "When you come to my show, you can tell I'm not pop," says the 21-year-old country artist from Vacaville, Calif. "I stand up for real country music."

Buck Ford holds true to pure country as defined by musical legends George Strait, Merle Haggard, George Jones and Craig Morgan. "When you come to my show, you can tell I'm not pop," says the 21-year-old country artist from Vacaville, Calif. "I stand up for real country music."

Ford and his Pure Country Band play at 10 p.m. New Year's Day, Jan. 1, at Donnelly's Sports Bar, 2980 Crater Lake Highway, Medford.

Before Ford was a country singer and acoustic guitarist, he was a professional motocross racer. To pass the time between races, Buck learned to play guitar. His aptitude for music was evident, and it wasn't long before this secondary talent took precedence over motocross. In 2009, he ended his three-year professional motocross stint to start a band.

"I had a lot of fun racing motocross," says Ford. "I love the sport and miss the sport ... but I just feel that singing country music is what I'm meant to do."

For his Pure Country Band, Ford recruited drummer Clete Berg, fiddler Ronnie Elkan, lead guitarist Gary Blodgett, bassist Steve Clark, pianist Brian West and pedal-steel guitarists Paul Dobbs and Dave Wren, who play intermittently.

The group's 2009 debut release "Guitar and Gasoline" features 10 original hits and prompted the 2010 release "For Now," recorded in Nashville, Tenn. "For Now" comprises songs written by Ford ("Back When You Were Mine," "Country Sound" and "Country Till I Die"), as well as songs by several Nashville writers and Craig Morgan, himself ("For Now").

Compared to the more "old-school" "Guitar and Gasoline," "For Now" has a Haggard-and-Strait feel and features some new, rockin' country and western swing.

A music video of the second track on the album, "I'll Never Know if I Don't Ask," will be released the first week of January.

The song is about "meeting a girl in a bar and having a conversation in a gentlemanly way," says Ford.

Cover to the show at Donnelly's is $5. For more information, see www.buckford.com or call Donnelly's at 541-245-2755.