Paul Cotton, guitarist and singer of Poco, dies at 78
Paul Cotton, former guitarist and singer of country-rock group Poco, has died at the age of 78. The late musician’s Facebook page broke the news yesterday, writing that he “passed away unexpectedly, peacefully.”
Poco co-founder Jim Messina – whom Cotton replaced when he arrived in 1970 – reacted to the “very sad news” on Facebook, calling Cotton a “special musical brother”.
“We spent time together before he joined Poco and indeed did me a great honor when he took up my post,” he wrote. “He came back into my life around 1995 when my son was three and we had the chance to have a good time together. I am now very grateful that I had the chance to meet Paul in 2009 when we played together again. I last heard his voice on the night of Rusty Young’s Radio Memorial which was hosted by John Cowan. The sound of her voice is now etched in my mind and heart forever. May he, this generous soul, rest in peace.
Cotton was born in Alabama and raised in South Chicago, learning guitar as a teenager and playing with many bands in the late 1950s and 1960s. The most famous of these bands, Illinois Speed Press, merged R&B, rock and country elements on a pair of records for Columbia Records: 1969’s The Illinois Rapid Press and the 1970s Duo.
He then joined Poco, first appearing on the group’s third album, 1971’s Inside. In addition to singing and playing guitar solo, Cotton also became one of the group’s main songwriters, writing hits like “Heart of the Night”, a Top 20 single from the 1978s. Legend. And it has become crucial for the versatility of the group.
“It would really depend on where we were on an album,” Cotton told Sound Waves in 2000. “If we needed anything, I was the guy they turned to. meaningful lyrics, like with ‘Bad Weather’, they have to take place in a medium to slow things down. “
Cotton left the band in 1987 but joined the band in the early 90s, remaining in training until 2010. The guitarist also released five solo albums, starting in the 90s. Change horses until 2014 100% cotton Paul.
His death comes less than four months after Poco’s Rusty Young passed away in April at the age of 75.
In Memoriam: 2021 deaths
In memory of the musicians, actors, producers and others who died in 2021.