Thirty-three years after first Sittin' In together, and nearly thirty years since they last toured together, Kenny Loggins and Jim Messina are sitting side by side in Loggins' living room. The two men are in the early stages of putting together their surprising and heartening Sittin' In Again reunion tour as well as finalizing a new Loggins & Messina retrospective of the same name.
Though Loggins & Messina's first greatest hits collection was called Best of Friends, both men confess that their relationship has long been a complex and sometimes difficult one. When they first met, Jim Messina was already a well-established success story, having produced and played with the legendary band Buffalo Springfield and later with the country-rock pioneers Poco. Loggins, meanwhile, was a young singer-songwriter with far less experience, but with talent to burn as evidenced by early compositions like "House At Pooh Corner" and "Danny's Song." Then Sittin' In (1972), originally envisioned as a one-off joint release intended to introduce Loggins as part of a Messina six-album production deal with Columbia Records, became a major smash hit.
So as if by public demand, this accidental duo was created. In the next few years, a series of albums would follow in rapid order ï¿½ 1972's Loggins & Messina, 1973's Full Sail, 1974's double-live On Stage, the same year's Mother Lode, 1975's cover song set So Fine and 1976's Native Sons. The Best of Friends collection followed later that year and in 1977 another live album fittingly called Finale. With that, Loggins & Messina, who had sold sixteen million albums and become one of rock's most popular draws, was over and apparently done.
As for the Sittin' In Again tour, both men want to celebrate the past while leaving the future an open and intriguing question. They want their show to feature a Sittin' In segment that will allow other musical associates and possibly former band members to join them onstage. For both men the chance to be Sittin' In Again represents what Jimmy Messina calls "a great and meaningful opportunity."
"I'm really looking forward to the audiences," says Kenny Loggins. "I'm looking forward to seeing good friends from long ago and, I'm hoping, some of the friends I've picked up along the way. And then . . .well, and then we'll just see where it goes from there."