"Crazy Love" is a 1979 hit single for the country rock group Poco introduced on the 1978 album Legend; written by founding group member Rusty Young, "Crazy Love" was the first single by Poco to reach the Top 40 and remained the group's biggest hit with especial impact as an Adult Contemporary hit being ranked by Billboard as the no#1 Adult Contemporary hit for the year 1979.
In 2012 Young would thus recall his writing "Crazy Love": "I was living in Los Angeles, working on my house one day" - "I was paneling a wall and looking out over the valley in L.A. and the chorus came into my head" - "I always had a guitar close at hand. It took about thirty minutes to write that song, because it was all there. It was kind of a gift." Young added that the "'Ooh, ooh, Ahhhh haaa' part" of the chorus was a stopgap he intended to replace with formal lyrics but the musicians who first backed Young on the song told him: "Don't do that, that's the way it's supposed to be."
In a July 17, 2011, broadcast of the Original 70s Soundtrack on urockradio.net, Young would say of his writing "Crazy Love: "for the first big hit - the only really huge hit Poco's had - [to be] a song that I wrote and sang is pretty ironic" - "When the band started all I did was [play] steel guitar and banjo and dobro and that kind of stuff: I was the instrumentalist in the band - I didn't sing and I didn't write....But I've always said that with the band what happened is that as people have left the band it's left room for others to grow. I had great teachers: Richie Furay; Neil [Young] and Stephen Stills [of Buffalo Springfield] were around in the beginning [and] I could listen to them writing songs, working on songs and how they did it. Jimmy [Messina] taught me really a lot about the whole recording process and writing poems. I just had these great teachers that I was around."
Having played steel guitar on the track "Kind Woman" on the final Buffalo Springfield album Last Time Around (1968), Rusty Young was invited by Buffalo Springfield departing members Richie Furay and Jim Messina to join them along with George Grantham and Randy Meisner in forming Poco. After earning only three writing credits over the course of the band's first six albums Young first raised his songwriting profile on the eighth Poco release Cantamos in 1974, Poco by that time having morphed into a four-man band consisting of founding members Rusty Young and George Grantham along with Timothy B. Schmit and Paul Cotton, who had joined the band in respectively 1969 and 1970: the ninth Poco album release Head Over Heels (1975) marked Young's debut as a lead vocalist on the track "Us". By the time of the May 1977 release of the album Indian Summer Timothy B. Schmit had been recruited to join the Eagles: Schmit remained with Poco for their Indian Summer tour whose Santa Monica Civic Auditorium edition in July 1977 was recorded as The Last Roundup, intended to be released as Poco's final album.
In 1978 Rusty Young and Paul Cotton auditioned for Poco's label ABC Records in hopes of being allowed to record an album together: in Young's words he and Cotton "got a little rehearsal hall, put together a band, and played...'Crazy Love' and 'Heart of the Night'" - the latter a Paul Cotton composition - for ABC Records executives "who said go ahead, make a record". Recorded at Crystal City Studios (Los Angeles) between April and August 1978, the resultant project was intended to be credited to the Cotton-Young Band: however ABC Records elected to have Young and Cotton along with the sidemen who'd backed them at Crystal City - Charlie Harrison, Steve Chapman, and Kim Bullard - continue as Poco, with The Last Roundup being shelved and the Crystal City tracks issued as the twelfth album release from Poco in November 1978, under the title Legend.
Issued as a single in January 1979, "Crazy Love" became the first Poco single to reach the Top 40 with a #17 peak on the Billboard Hot 100: on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart, the track spent seven weeks at #1 and at the year's end was announced by Billboard as the #1 Adult Contemporary hit for 1979. "Crazy Love" also charted Billboard's C&W chart at #95. In Canada "Crazy Love" reached a chart peak of #15: the track also became Poco's lone charting single in Australia with a #73 peak.
Although Poco would have three subsequent Top 40 hits all of which reached the Adult Contemporary chart's Top Ten, "Crazy Love" remained the band's signature song: in a 2008 interview promoting an upcoming Poco gig, Rusty Young stated: "The only reason we're [ie. Young and the interviewer] talking now is 'Crazy Love'. That was our first hit single. It's a classic, and it still pays the mortgage."
"Crazy Love" was also recorded by John & Audrey Wiggins on their 1997 album The Dream, by Jars of Clay on their 1999 EP Front Yard Luge, by Rhonda Vincent on her 2009 album Destination Life, and by Barbara Fairchild.