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Poco was started in 1968 in L.A. when the Buffalo Springfield was splitting up. The final Buffalo Springfield Show was on May 5, 1968.

Jim Messina and Richie Furay decided to start a new country-rock band, and they needed a pedal steel guitar player. Rusty Young had played pedal Steel guitar on "Kind Woman". Rusty's friend and drummer from Boenzee Cryque, his former band, George Grantham, also joined. Randy Meisner, a bass player who had been in "The Poor", a band from Nebraska, joined also, at Rusty's recommendation. The new band was called Pogo, and they debuted at "The Troubador" in L.A. in November, 1968. In April, 1969, Walt Kelly threatened to sue them because "Pogo" was the name of his comic strip. They decided to drop the line off the "G", and became "Poco". Meisner quit the band around this time.

In February, 1969, Pogo signed with Epic Records, after trading Graham Nash for Richie Furay with Atlantic Records. The first Poco album, " Pickin' Up the Pieces", was released on May 19, 1969. It went to #63 on Billboard charts. Timothy B. Schmidt, who had been in New Breed/Glad joined on bass. (They later changed their name to Redwing.) The second Poco album, titled "Poco", was released May 6, 1970. Jim Messina left Poco in October, 1970. Paul Cotton, who had been in the "Illinois Speed Press", joined on guitar.

"Deliverin', a live album was released on January 13, 1971. On September 5, 1971, "From the Inside" was released. "A Good Feelin' to Know" was released on November 25, 1972. On September 15, 1973, "Crazy Eyes" was released. Richie Furay left Poco around this time, to Join the Souther, Hillman and Furay Band. The remaining members decided to continue as a four-piece band. On April 12, 1974, "Seven" was released. On November 1, 1974, "Cantamos" was released.

On April 12, 1975, Poco signed up with ABC records. "Head Over Heels" was released in July, 1975. Epic released "The Very Best of Poco" soon after. On April 3, 1976, Epic released "Poco Live". On May 29, 1976, ABC released "Rose of Cimarron". In May 1977, "Indian Summer" was released. In September 1977, Timothy B. Schmidt left Poco to become the Eagles bass player, replacing Randy Meisner, for the second time. George Grantham left Poco in January 1978.

They had recorded a live album, called "The Last Roundup", which was to be their last. Rusty and Paul were left to decide what they would do next. They thought about starting a new band, called the Cotton/Young band, but ABC told them they still had a contract as long as they were Poco. They had auditions, and Steve Chapman (drums) and Charlie Harrison (bass) were hired. ABC cancelled the release of "The Last Roundup".

"Legend" was released in November, 1978. Kim Bullard joined on keyboards in December, 1978. This gave Poco their two biggest hits to date, "Crazy Love" (#17) and "Heart of the Night" (#20). Also, in 1979, Poco performed "Heart of the Night", at the "NO Nukes" concert in NYC. In July 1980, "Under the Gun" was released, on MCA records. In July 1981,"Blue and Grey", was released, followed by "Cowboys and Englishmen" in February, 1982. After that, Poco signed with Atlantic Records, and on September 20, 1982, they released "Ghost Town". A compilation album, "Backtracks" was released by MCA in December 1982. On April 16, 1984, "Inamorata" was released. It had vocals by George Grantham, Timothy B. Schmidt, and Richie Furay.

In November 1984, they relocated to Nashville. They disbanded in August, 1987. Rusty joined Vince Gill's backing band sometime after that.

In September 1988, Rusty organized a reunion with the original members of Poco, Jim Messina, Randy Meisner, George Grantham, and Richie Furay. They signed with RCA Records. George was sick and didn't play drums, but did vocals. "Legacy" was released on September 23, 1989. "Call it Love" reached #18. Richie had two songs on Legacy, but couldn't finish the tour because of his church commitments. (He had since become pastor of Calvary Chapel Church in Boulder, CO) In November 1989, MCA released a compilation CD, "Crazy Lovin". In November 1990, a 2-CD set,"The Forgotten Trail" was released by Sony Legacy.

In 1999, Poco reformed with Rusty, Paul, George, and Jack Sundrud on bass. Jack had previously been with Poco in 1985 -86. He is also a successful songwriter in Nashville.

The new CD, Running Horse, is now available at the official Poco website.www.poconut.com

Naomi E.

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