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Grantham, George (20th January 1947-Present)

Drummer and vocalist from Oklahoma who was a member of Boenzee Cryque and Police before joining Poco.  Boenzee Cryque enjoyed some moderate success with their singles, “Sky Gone Grey”, backed with “Still in Love with You Baby”, and “Watch the Time”, and contributed one song to the soundtrack of Psych-Out, “Ashbury Wednesday”.  They broke up in 1968.

George, along with Rusty Young, hooked up with Richie Furay, Jim Messina and Randy Meisner to form a new band called Pogo.  After four months of rehearsal, they made their debut at The Troubador in Los Angeles, California.  Until they were allowed to record, however, they had to change their name, as “Pogo” was copyrighted.  They changed the g to a c and Poco was born.

It was the first of many changes in their long and storied careers.  Jim and Randy did not get along and Randy left the band before their first album was even released.  He was supplanted by Timothy B. Schmidt.  George moonlighted on projects such as Neil Young’s eponymous solo album in 1969 and Gunhill Road’s self-titled LP in 1973.  In the meantime, Poco offered up at least one album a year throughout the ‘70s.

Around 1977 or 1978, George left the band and toured briefly with McGuinn, Clark & Hillman until settling in Nashville, Tennessee.  One of his first post-Poco recordings was Richie Furay’s Dance a Little Light, released in 1978.  He also offered up his percussive talents on Ricky Skaggs’ 1982 album, Highways & Heartaches, which spawned the #1 hits, “Heartbroke” and “Highway 40 Blues”.

In 1984, he temporarily re-joined Poco on Inamorata.  An official reunion occurred in 1988, with George, Richie Furay, Randy Meisner, Jim Messina, and Rusty Young.  The result was Legacy, and it hit the shelves on 23rd September 1989.  One of the singles from the album, “Call it Love”, cracked the top twenty.

At the turn of the decade, George joined The Flying Burrito Brothers, doing some live dates and drumming on Eye of the Hurricane on the Sundown label in 1993.

After that, Poco again reincarnated, this time as a quartet comprising George, Paul Cotton, Jack Sundrud, and Rusty Young.  This version of the band entered the new millennium with a boxed set and a tour under their belts, as well as a new CD, Running Horse.  George still found time to perform on A Tribute to the King with Ronnie McDowell in 2002.

On 29th July 2004, disaster struck.  Poco was performing live in Springfield, Ohio, and as they launched into their second song of the set, George suffered a debilitating stroke.  It seemed to paralyze the left side of his body, although he amazingly continued drumming with his right hand.  Rusty Young asked for a doctor, and George was whisked away via ambulance to the hospital.  The stroke left him completely immobilized, and he has spent the last several years in rehabilitation.

He still manages to perform occasionally with Poco.

Here he is with Poco on “It’s a Good Feeling” in 2013 where he plays the tambourine…