Culver City Observer -

Jim Messina Tour Is Coming to Pepperdine

 

January 19, 2017

Jim Messina -- songwriter, singer, guitarist, recording engineer and record producer -- is back on the road again with his 2017 solo tour, which will be making a stop at the intimate Smothers Theatre on the campus of Pepperdine University in Malibu on January 29.

One half of Loggins & Messina, co-founder of the country-rock band Poco, and member and key contributor to folk-rock group Buffalo Springfield, Messina, 69, has left an indelible footprint on popular music, selling over 20 million albums while with Loggins.

He'll be singing all of his big hits, which include "Pickin' Up the Pieces," "Be Free," "Your Mama Don't Dance," among many others.

Messina also released a new live album in July called "In the Groove" which contains a catalogue of all of his greatest hits. He invited longtime collaborator and former Poco steel guitarist Rusty Young to play on some of the songs. Something special about this new album -- it's also available in USB flash card format, so you can plug it intoyour automobile's audio system or download it onto your computer.

"I think we're at a point where the new generation isn't interested in CD's," forward-thinking Messina said. "They've got their iPhones, iPads and computers."

When Bruce Palmer left Buffalo Springfield in 1968 Messina was hired as a permanent replacement on bass, joining Stephen Stills, Dewey Martin, Richie Furay, and Neil Young. Soon after Messina joined the band, the group decided to break up and he and Furay would team up to form the band Poco. However, he received the most fame while teaming up with Loggins.

After leaving Poco, Messina signed a contract with Columbia Records as an independent producer and was first introduced to the idea of producing Kenny Loggins in the summer of 1970. At the time, Loggins had no agent, no manager and was a songwriter for ABC Dunhill and not a performing artist.

The two recorded a number of Loggins' compositions in Messina's home living room and then Columbia signed Loggins (with the assistance of Messina) to a six-album contract, with Messina as producer. Messina originally intended to lend his name to the Loggins project only to help introduce the unknown Loggins to Messina's well-established Buffalo Springfield and Poco audiences. By the time the first album was completed Messina had contributed so much in terms of songwriting, arrangement, instrumentation, and vocals that an "accidental" duo was born. The album was titled "Kenny Loggins with Jim Messina Sittin' In." The album's first single release was the caribbean-flavored "Vahevala."

"When our first album, 'Sittin' In, came out, we started receiving a lot of excitement about the music and good sales," Messina said. "We had no choice, it was either I now go on and continue to produce him and we do the solo career or we stay together and let this work. For me, I didn't desire to go back out on the road. "I had enough of that, and I wanted to produce records. But Clive Davis (then president of Columbia Records) intervened and said, 'I think you'd be making a big mistake if you guys didn't take this opportunity. Things like this onlyhappen once in a lifetime. It may merit you sleeping on it overnight and making a decision that will be in your best interest.' He was absolutely correct. Kenny made the decision as well. It delayed his solo career, but it gave him an opportunity, I think, to have one."

Loggins ultimately decided to strike out on his own, and in 1976 the duo split amicably after a final concert in Hawaii and both went on to solo careers.

In 1981 Messina signed with Warner Brothers Records and recorded and released three albums. Eight years later, Poco's original lineup (consisting of Messina, Richie Furay, Rusty Young, George Grantham and Randy Meisner) regrouped for a successful reunion tour. That same year, they released the album "Legacy."

Much to the delight of their adoring fans Messina and Loggins hit the road as a duo again in 2005 and then in 2009. Since they both live in Santa Barbara that made it easy to rehearse.

Will there be any surprise guests taking the stage at Smothers Theatre?

Go to jimmessina.com for more information and to purchase "In the Groove."

 

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