Poco - Legend

Poco – Legend

90 / 100

It seemed that Poco and Colorado contemporaries Firefall were occupying the same radio real estate during 1978 with their brand of easy on the ear melodic country-tinged rock.

Written by: gdmonline

ALBUM: Legend
LABEL: ABC Records
YEAR: 1978
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List

LINEUP: Rusty Young – lead and backing vocals, guitars, steel guitar * Paul Cotton – lead and backing vocals, guitars * Charlie Harrison – bass, backing vocals * Steve Chapman – drums

Additional Musicians: Phil Kenzie – sax * Mike Boddicker – synth * Jai Winding, Tom Stephenson – keyboards * Steve Forman – percussion

TRACK LISTING: 01 Boomerang * 02 Spellbound * 03 Barbados * 04 Little Darlin’ * 05 Love Comes Love Goes * 06 Heart Of The Night * 07 Crazy Love * 08 The Last Goodbye * 09 Legend

WEBLINK: Site Link


Country-rock was still thriving as the tail-end of the 70’s decade was approaching. Artists like the Eagles, and Neil Young plus a multitude of others were still doing good business but one could sense that the tide was on the way out for this genre.

This was evidenced by a change in direction of many artists from 1979 onwards. If the artists couldn’t read the tea leaves themselves then they would’ve been told by their management or their record labels in no uncertain terms. Before the tide turned, the band Poco had one last crack at country-rock glory with 1978’s ‘Legend’ album. The band had released many albums since their 1969 debut, with ‘Rose Of Cimarron’ being their biggest hit up to this point.

Rusty Young was still the pinnacle band member from the original lineup, though he had to endure watching key personnel such as Richie Furay and Timothy B Schmidt depart the band a few years earlier. He was however ably supported by fellow lead singer, guitarist and songwriter Paul Cotton on ‘Legend’.

The duo were going to release new material as the Cotton-Young Band but at the behest of their record label reverted to Poco. The rhythm section of Charlie Harrison and Steve Chapman both came from Al Stewart‘s touring band, as did guest sax player Phil Kenzie.

The Songs

This album was graced with two bonafide hit singles in ‘Crazy Love’ and ‘Heart Of The Night’, both staples on the radio during the early-mid 1979 months (the album was released in November 1978). ‘Crazy Love’ was released as the first single in January 1979, ‘Heart Of The Night’ in May 1979. Both made the top 40 singles chart: #17 and #20 respectively.

It seemed that Poco and Colorado contemporaries Firefall were occupying the same radio real estate with their brand of easy on the ear melodic country-tinged rock. Anchoring the album was the title-track ‘Legend’ which was the rockiest moment by a (excuse the pun) ‘country mile’. ‘Love Comes Love Goes’ and ‘The Last Goodbye’ operate in the smooth mid-tempo realm, whereas ‘Barbados’ is a breezy number, hard to ignore the Jimmy Buffet and Bertie Higgins with that song. For something a little different check out the funky grooves of the opener ‘Boomerang’.

In Summary

The album itself made it to #14 on the Billboard album charts, and this occurred during an interrupted period when ABC Records was bought out by MCA Records. Apparently, MCA wasn’t that interested in Poco, but Young and Cotton must have done something right because the label hung around for another three albums before hooking up with Atlantic.

Poco released many more albums after this, their last studio album was 2013’s ‘All Fired Up’. Rusty Young still leads the band who are still active, with gigs scheduled into 2021. Talk about longevity. 50 plus years and counting.

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