Thursday, April 15, 2021
– Rusty Young, the leader of country rock band Poco, died on Wednesday at 75 of a heart attack at his home in Davisville, Mo.
Young was a guitarist, vocalist and songwriter, but was perhaps best known for his pedal steel playing, which he made sound like an electric guitar.
He was raised in Colorado and started playing lap steel at the age of six. he learned how to play guitar and steel guitar. He played in bands in the Denver area, including a stint in a psychedelic rock band.
Young ended up playing steel guitar on Buffalo Springfield's "Last Time Arund" album on the the Richie Furay song "Kind Woman." Young, Furay and Jim Messina, who was a member of Buffalo Springfield, were founding members of Poco in 1968. The original line-up included drummer George Grantham and bassist Randy Meisner, who would later become a member of the Eagles. Furay left the band with Young assuming more songwriting responsibilities. He wrote two of the band's best known songs, "Rose of Cimarron" and "Crazy Love."
Young was inducted into the Steel Guitar Hall of Fame in 2013. He said he was retiring later that year, but that didn't last long. The group reportedly still was doing about 100 shows per year.
Young released his first solo album in2017 on Blue Elan Records, "Waitin' For the Sun." In March 2019, he released a new song, "Listen to Your Heart."
Young is survived by his wife, Mary, their daughter, Sara, son, Will, and three young grandsons, Chandler, Ryan and Graham, as well as Mary's three children Joe, Marci and Hallie, and grandchildren Quentin and Emma.
A memorial service will be held Oct. 16 at Wildwood Springs Lodge in Steelville, Mo., where Young and his wife met 20 years ago.