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Former Poco Guitarist & Singer Paul Cotton’s Cause of Death


It is with the deepest sorrow to announce Mr. Cotton’s death. Paul Cotton’s cause of death will be shared; stay with us for more details.

Mr. Cotton joined Poco back in 1970 by replacing Jim Messina, the founding guitarist. Later, he became one of the group’s primary singers and songwriters.

During his long tenure with the band, Mr. Cotton influenced on country-rock act’s main songwriters. For decades, he remained with Poco, taking a break of a few years in the late 1980s and then rejoined.

Former Poco Guitarist & Singer Paul Cotton's Cause of Death
Image Source: 955klos.com

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Paul Cotton’s Cause of Death: Unexpectedly, Peacefully

According to sources, Paul Cotton’s cause of death was not due to any illness. It is said that he passed away unexpectedly but peacefully, at the age of 78. 

Former Poco Guitarist & Singer Paul Cotton’s Cause of Death

Jim Messina, the Poco founder, wrote: “I woke up this morning to very sad news. Paul Cotton was a special musical kindred brother. We spent time together before he joined Poco and indeed gave me a great honor when he filled my position.”

He added: “He came back into my life once again around 1995 when my son was three years old, and we had a chance to spend some gracious moments together. I am now so very grateful I had a chance to meet up with Paul in 2009 when we performed together once again.”

He said at the end: “I last heard his voice on the evening of Rusty Young‘s Radio Memorial that was hosted by John Cowan. The sound of his voice is now forever imprinted in my mind and in my heart. May he, this very kind-hearted soul, Rest In Peace.”

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Reactions to Paul Cotton’s Death

One wrote: “RIP Paul Cotton. Loved his work with Poco. “Too Many Nights Too Long” is one of my all-time fav songs. Loved “Midnight Rain” and “Heart Of The Night” too. Thank you for the music.”

One said: “First Rusty and now Paul. Poco is taking a hit this year; thanks for the music and Rest In Peace Paul Cotton.”

One tweeted: “Rusty Young of Poco passed away 14 April 2021, and now Paul Cotton passed away 1 August 2021. Both are awesome singers, songwriters, and musicians. Listening to “Rose Of Cimarron” as I type this. Probably listen to “Legend” next. Thank you for the music.”

One replied: “Rest easy, Paul Cotton, former guitarist, singer, and songwriter of @PocoRocks Paul replace Jim Messina in the band and went on to write and sing the Poco gem “Heart Of The Night” about his love of New Orleans. Paul was 78.”

One shared: “Sad news today about the passing of Paul Cotton, lead guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter of the legendary country-rock band Poco. He took an existing wonderful band and moved it more in his own direction, yet retaining the genuineness of the band’s music and its legacy. R.I.P.”

Please remember that our condolences will be the only thing to get his beloveds through such difficult times. Kindly leave yours in the comment box below.

More to Know About Paul Cotton

For those of you who don’t know, Mr. Cotton was not only a guitarist but also one of the group’s key songwriters. He penned hits like “Heart of the Night,” which became a Top 20 single from 1978’s Legend.

Back in 2000, he told Sound Waves: “It would really depend on where we were on an album. If we needed something up, I was the guy they turned to. But if you’ve got a meaningful lyric, like with ‘Bad Weather,’ it needs to take place in a medium to slow things down.”

Mr. Cotton was able to release some of his solo albums called Changing Horses and Firebird. He also co-founded the band Illinois Speed Press, and before joining Poco.

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  1. Dan Langan August 31, 2021

    So sad. A Poco fan first time I heard them. My favorite band all thru their changes. Bad Weather just a timeless so g.
    Thank you for all the hundreds of hours if not the music gave me

  2. PAT M VELAHOS April 17, 2022

    Was a fan forever. Last saw them in Spring Lake New Jersey. We all had dinner that nite. One of them made a joke @ borrowing someone’s filet mignon. Great show. Great man. They had a meet & greet for everyone. One of the great nights of my life. I had the pleasure to speak w/ all of them. I could tell Paul was as friendly as he was a GREAT musician & person. I was going to key west at some point, didn’t end up going , but was going to see if I could find him while there. I wish I had done that. He really impressed that nite in Spring Lake. I WILL REMEMBER that nite forever. I thank him for that. I am sorry for ur loss. He is a national treasure. I miss him. If any of u r ever in the S Jersey area I would be honored if u look me up. Paul’s people would always be welcome here. Pat Velahos – Monroeville, NJ.
    small town, easy to find me. Thankyou so much.


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