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Local country band Fogline hits Nashville, records album

Local country band Fogline just returned from Nashville after recording its first album.

Lead singer Dustin Clark said the band has been gaining traction in Southern Oregon in the past few years and had more than 30 shows scheduled this year, but when COVID-19 hit, the band had to cancel almost all of them.

Instead of getting down about the pandemic, the group decided to write more music and have it formally produced, Clark said.

He said the guitarist Sam Kovic was listening to Kenny Chesney albums one day and so, on a whim, he reached out to the producer, Michael Nechling, who agreed to record the group’s first album.

The band pre-recorded the tracks at Steelhead Studios in Medford, owned by Kovic, and then touched them up in Nashville with Nechling.

All songs on the album are originals. “It’s not your ordinary country,” Clark said. “It’s kind of edgy. It kind of has a Southern rock vibe.”

Clark said most of the band members didn’t play much country before Fogline.

“We didn’t stick to country protocol,” Clark said. “We used the strengths of each player, and everyone brings their own personality to their own instrument. It brings a diversity to the sound.”

Clark, originally from Medford, has been a self-employed taxidermist for 26 years. He said he’s lived and breathed hunting and fishing since he was a small child, and so the content of the songs are sincere.

“The Southern Oregon experience I’ve had the last 43 years comes pouring out in the songs,” Clark said.

As the main songwriter, he said his songs are about the most important parts of his life from steelhead fishing on the Rogue River to loving his wife and following his passions.

Fogline consists of Clark, Kovic bass player Zak Knutson and the most recent addition, Kovic’s brother, Pete Yaskovic, as the drummer.

Clark said having the two brothers on stage is a special time for them because they’ve always played music individually, but never together until now.

The band doesn’t plan to release the full album until it can have a proper party to do so, Clark said. He said Fogline may drop singles every once in a while, but members want to wait until they can celebrate uninhibited by COVID-19.

Fogline has opened for Trace Atkins, Dustin Lynch and Lee Bryce, among other renowned musicians, in its short career.

Clark said he started playing music with a friend from church about six years ago, then as they started gaining popularity, they added band members. Within those six years, there’s been a lot of turnover. It eventually led to the band that is today with its unique sound and quick progression.

“It’s just like a fairy tale,” Clark said.

Fogline lead singer Dustin Clark, right, lead guitarist Sam Kovic, middle, and bass player Zak Knutson perform on the streets of Nashville.{ }Photo by Jeff Hensley