The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio


November 27, 2007

Making his bread as Butter

Ashtabula native making a mark on country music with his Trailer Choir

Ashtabula native Marc Fortney had an epiphany while stretched out on his back three stories above a Nashville sidewalk.

“I was working on this decrepit chimney, filling in the cracks, and I thought ‘This is not why I get to see my mom and dad only three times a year and am making all these sacrifices,’” said Fortney in a phone interview from his home in Nashville. “The next day, I said ‘This is who I am going to be, a song writer and an artist.’ I made a decision I was never going to do anything with my life other than write songs and be a performer. That was going to be how I made my living. ... My life really changed after I made that statement, it pushed me in that direction.”

That was five years ago, and Fortney, 37, says he is just now starting to see the results of his resolve pay off. In late 2006, country star Toby Keith stopped by Nashville’s 12th and Porter to catch a performance by Fortney and his Trailer Choir. After listening to the band a couple of nights, Keith brought his entire entourage of management people with him to the show and signed the band as part of his Show Dog family.

“Two days later we were on (the Big Dog Daddy) Tour,” said Fortney, who spent three months opening for Keith at venues across the U.S.

Fortney and his band will use their holiday break to return to his home town Dec. 22, when Trailer Choir will be part of The Bull Christmas Bash at Jewel’s Dance Hall. Roger McCoy of The Bull says Trailer Choir will join Next-of-Kin and Tony Rio and Relentless for the all-night show. Trailer Choir is scheduled to play 11 p.m. Call Jewel’s for ticket information.

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