Whenever I write “history” I feel old, but here goes. In some respects it seems like only yesterday that I left my hometown of Yellow Springs, Ohio to become a folksinger in New York City – but that was 1964 – that’s not exactly yesterday, is it?! But it was the beginning of a musical career that would span 40 years, fulfilling a dream of mine from the time I was in high school even to the present time.
When I arrived in NYC I met Stephen Stills, and together we would become a part of a folk group in Greenwich Village called the Au Go Go Singers, named after a famous folk club in the City. The Au Go Go Singers recorded one album together before breaking up and going their separate ways.
Shortly after that I became aware of the music that was being made on the west coast when a friend introduced me to the Byrds. I was working at an aircraft engine company at the time and decided right then and there I had to be making music, so I got in touch with Stephen who had moved out to California. It wasn’t long until I arrived there myself to start another band with him. It would be several weeks before we would “hook up” with another mutual friend we had both met along the way: Neil Young, and the beginning of the Buffalo Springfield was about to steamroll onto the southern California music scene.
The group would consist of the three of us along with Bruce Palmer and Dewey Martin. The Buffalo Springfield would be short lived, making only three albums and lasting two years. From that time on, the careers of Stephen and Neil are well documented, and I would start a new band, Poco, with my friend Jimmy Messina (producer, engineer and musician). Together with Rusty Young (no relation to Neil), George Grantham and Randy Meisner we would create the template for the modern country rock sound that influenced and launched the careers of such groups as the Eagles, Pure Prairie League and many others. Messina and Meisner would leave the band early in its existence, opening the door for Timothy B. Schmit and Paul Cotton who would take their places in the lineup. I recorded six albums with Poco before I left to explore other avenues of music, recording two albums with Chris Hillman (Byrds / Flying Burrito Brothers) and J.D. Souther calling ourselves the Souther Hillman Furay Band (along with Al Perkins, Paul Harris and Jim Gordon).
It was during this time that Al Perkins led me to saving faith in Jesus Christ, and my whole life changed course. At first I thought I would continue in music, recording three solo albums (I’ve Got A Reason, Dance A Little Light and I Still Have Dreams) all on the Asylum label.
I recorded one more album during this time, Seasons Of Change (Myrrh Records), before deciding to head in another direction, answering a “call” upon my life to become a pastor. That was in 1982 and I have been pastoring a small church, Calvary Chapel, here in Colorado ever since.
Truthfully, I thought my music days were behind me although the church worship leader, Scott Sellen, and I began performing as a duo and writing songs together. In 1996 this turned into an opportunity to record a CD of worship songs – In My Father’s House – for the Calvary Chapel label at that time. This opened the doors for live performances, most of which were church-oriented until a friend of mine, Kenny Weisberg, encouraged us to perform at a venue he promoted in southern California. I accepted the invitation and it became an annual event for us until just a couple of years ago.
For the next several years I continued to play various concerts with Scott and recorded two more CDs – I Am Sure, another devotional CD – and The Heartbeat Of Love, the first mainstream recording I had made in 25 years. It was such a special project for me because of the many friends from Buffalo Springfield, Poco, The Dirt Band, Turtles, Kenny Loggins and many others who joined me on the project.
Recently, the duo of Scott and myself expanded to include Scott’s son Aaron (bass), Alan Lemke (drums) and my daughter Jesse Lynch (vocals). We have been performing in both Church and mainstream venues. It is so satisfying to have “family” members be a part of the group, but it’s also satisfying to have the music sound and feel so good after all these years. I have been so excited about the current music that we recorded a two- CD project called The Richie Furay Band – Alive. Truthfully, it never even crossed my mind that I’d be doing this now with such passion and enjoyment. The musical part of my life never ceases to amaze me as October 2010 saw the reunion of Stephen Stills, Neil Young and myself, along with Joe Vitale and Rick Rosas, as Buffalo Springfield. Now with the first Buffalo Springfield tour in forty-two years set to embark we are all eagerly awaiting the turning of the next page.
I have been married to my amazing wife Nancy since 1967. We have four daughters, Timmie, Katie, Polly and Jesse. Three sons-in-law – Dave, Vincent and Tom and seven grandkids – Jackson, Luke, Kendall and Ty; Parker and Cooper; and Brooklyn. Truly, I have been blessed more than any one ever should be – fulfilling my dreams of music; having a loving family, a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, and then you, so many friends (sometimes called “fans”).
Well that brings you up to date with me. I hope you enjoy the website and check out some of the music and other resources. If you haven’t heard my music in a few years, I guarantee you, you won’t be disappointed – especially if you’ve been a part of my musical journey! If it weren’t good or didn’t make me “feel” good doing it, I wouldn’t bother you or encourage you to take a listen and look around; but it is good and I encourage you to do so. Drop me a note while you’re on the site and sign the guest book.
Thanks for stopping by … Richie