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America

A light folk-rock act of the early '70s, America had several Top Ten hits, including the number ones "A Horse with No Name" and "Sister Golden Hair." Vocalists/guitarists Dewey Bunnell, Dan Peek, and Gerry Beckley met while they were still in high school in the late '60s; all three were sons of U.S. Air Force officers who were stationed in the U.K. After they completed school in 1970, they formed an acoustic folk-rock quartet called Daze in London, which was soon pared down to the trio of Bunnell, Peek, and Beckley. Adopting the name America, the group landed a contract with Jeff Dexter, a promoter for the Roundhouse concert venue. Dexter had America open for several major artists and the group soon signed with Warner Bros. Records. By the fall of 1970, the group was recording its debut album in London, with producers Ian Samwell and Jeff Dexter.

"A Horse with No Name," America's debut single, was released at the end of 1971. In January 1972, the song -- which strongly recalled the acoustic numbers of Neil Young -- became a number three hit in the U.K. The group's self-titled debut album followed the same stylistic pattern and became a hit as well, peaking at number 14. Following their British success, America returned to North America, beginning a supporting tour for the Everly Brothers. "A Horse with No Name" was released in the U.S. that spring, where it soon became a number one single, pushing Neil Young's "Heart of Gold" off the top of the charts; America followed the single to the top of the charts. "I Need You" became another Top Ten hit that summer, and the group began work on their second album. "Ventura Highway," the first single released from this collaboration, became their third straight Top Ten hit in December of 1972. In the beginning of 1973, America won the Grammy Award for Best New Artist of 1972.

Homecoming was released in January of 1973, becoming a Top Ten hit in the U.S. and peaking at number 21 in the U.K. America's essential sound didn't change with this record; it just became more polished. However, the hits stopped coming fairly soon -- they had only one minor Top 40 hit in 1973. Hat Trick, the group's third album, was released toward the end of 1973; it failed to make it past number 28 on the American charts. Released in the late fall of 1974, Holiday was the first record the group made with producer George Martin. Holiday returned America to the top of the charts, peaking at number three and launching the hit singles "Tin Man" and "Lonely People." "Sister Golden Hair," pulled from 1975's Hearts, became their second number one single. That same year, the group released History: America's Greatest Hits, which would eventually sell over four million copies.

Although America's 1976 effort Hideaway went gold and peaked at number 11, the group's audience was beginning to decline. After releasing Harbor to a lukewarm reception, Dan Peek left the group, deciding to become a contemporary Christian recording artist. The group continued as a duo; their last Martin-produced record, Silent Letter, was released in 1979 to little attention. America returned to the Top Ten in 1982 with "You Can Do Magic," an adult contemporary pop number that featured synthesizers along with their trademark harmonies. "The Border" became their last Top 40 hit in 1983, peaking at number 33. After releasing America in Concert in the summer of 1985, the group continued to tour successfully into the '90s, resurfacing in 1998 with Human Nature.

The early part of the new millennium saw America release not only a handful of live albums as well as a holiday-themed studio recording, but also the exhaustive, career-spanning box set Highway, released in 2000. On the heels of this renewed interest, America were tempted back into the studio in 2006 by longtime fans and musicians Adam Schlesinger of Fountains of Wayne and James Iha of the Smashing Pumpkins. Although encouraging Bunnell and Beckley to stick to America's core sound, producers Schlesinger and Iha brought in younger musicians influenced by America to guest on the album, including Ryan Adams, Nada Surf, and others. Released in early 2007, Here & Now featured new material by America as well as covers written by bands heavily influenced by the soft rock pioneers. The duo of Bunnell and Beckley returned with the independently released covers album Back Pages in July 2011. That very same month, the duo's former bandmate Dan Peek died at his home in Missouri at the age of 60. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Back Pages

1. America

2. A Road Song

3. Woodstock

4. Caroline

5. Someday

6. Sailing To Philadelphia

7. Crying In My Sleep

8. Time Of The Season

9. Something In The Way She Moves

10. On The Way Home

11. Till I Hear From You

12. My Back Pages

x

Track List: The Definitive Collection Pop Collection

Disc 1

1. A Horse With No Name

2. I Need You

3. Riverside

4. Sandman

6. Ventura Highway

7. Don't Cross The River

8. Only In Your Heart

9. To Each His Own

10. Cornwall Blank

11. Muskrat Love

12. Green Monkey

13. She's Gonna Let You Down

14. Rainbow Song

Disc 2

1. Tin Man

2. Another Try

3. Lonely People

4. Hollywood

5. Baby It's Up To You

6. Old Man Took

7. Sister Golden Hair

8. Daisy Jane

9. Woman Tonight

10. Today's The Day

11. Amber Cascades

12. Jet Boy Blue

13. Watership Down

14. God Of The Sun

15. Sergeant Darkness

16. Sarah

x

Track List: Encore: More Greatest Hits

5. You Can Do Magic

6. Hollywood

7. Another Try

8. Old Man Took

9. Today's The Day

10. Can't Fall Asleep To A Lullaby

11. Survival

13. Right Before Your Eyes

14. Cornwall Blank

15. To Each His Own

16. The Border

x

Track List: America's Greatest Hits/History

1. A Horse With No Name

2. I Need You

3. Sandman

4. Ventura Highway

5. Don't Cross The River

6. Only In Your Heart

7. Muskrat Love

8. Tin Man

9. Lonely People

10. Sister Golden Hair

11. Daisy Jane

12. Woman Tonight

x

Track List: Holiday

1. Miniature

2. Tin Man

3. Another Try

4. Lonely People

5. Glad To See You

6. Mad Dog

7. Hollywood

8. Baby It's Up To You

9. You

10. Old Man Took

11. What Does It Matter

12. In The Country

x

Track List: Homecoming

1. Ventura Highway

2. To Each His Own

3. Don't Cross The River

4. Moon Song

5. Only In Your Heart

6. Till The Sun Comes Up Again

7. Cornwall Blank

8. Head And Heart

9. California Revisited

10. Saturn Nights

x

Track List: Hat Trick

1. Muskrat Love

2. Wind Wave

3. She's Gonna Let You Down

4. Rainbow Song

5. Submarine Ladies

6. Ites Life

7. Hat Trick

8. Molten Love

9. Green Monkey

10. Willow Tree Lullaby

11. Goodbye

x

Track List: America

1. Riverside

2. Sandman

3. Three Roses

4. Children

5. A Horse With No Name

6. Here

7. I Need You

8. Rainy Day

9. Never Found The Time

10. Clarice

11. Donkey Jaw

12. Pigeon Song

x

Track List: The Warner Bros. Years 1971-1977

1. Riverside

2. Sandman

3. Three Roses

4. Children

5. A Horse With No Name

6. Here

7. I Need You

8. Rainy Day

9. Never Found The Time

10. Clarice

11. Donkey Jaw

12. Pigeon Song

13. Ventura Highway

14. To Each His Own

15. Don't Cross The River

16. Moon Song

17. Only In Your Heart

18. Till The Sun Comes Up Again

19. Cornwall Blank

20. Head And Heart

21. California Revisited

22. Saturn Nights

23. Muskrat Love

24. Wind Wave

25. She's Gonna Let You Down

26. Rainbow Song

27. Submarine Ladies

28. It's Life

29. Hat Trick

30. Molten Love

31. Green Monkey

32. Willow Tree Lullaby

33. Goodbye

34. Miniature (Instrumental)

35. Tin Man

36. Another Try

37. Lonely People

38. Glad To See You

39. Mad Dog

40. Hollywood

41. Baby It's Up To You

42. You

43. Old Man Took

44. What Does It Matter

45. In The Country

46. Daisy Jane

47. Half A Man

48. Midnight

49. Bell Tree

50. Old Virginia

51. People In The Valley

52. Company

53. Woman Tonight

54. The Story Of A Teenager

55. Sister Golden Hair

56. Tomorrow

57. Seasons

58. Lovely Night

59. Amber Cascades

60. Don't Let It Get You Down

61. Can't You See

62. Watership Down

63. Who Loves You

64. She's Beside You

65. Hideaway, Part I

66. She's A Liar

67. Letter

68. Today's The Day

69. Jet Boy Blue

70. Hideaway, Part II

71. God Of The Sun

72. Slow Down

73. Don't Cry Baby

74. Now She's Gone

75. Political Poachers

76. Sarah

77. Sergeant Darkness

78. Are You There

79. These Brown Eyes

80. Monster

81. Hurricane

82. Down To The Water

83. Tin Man (Live Version)

84. Muskrat Love (Live Version)

85. I Need You (Live Version)

86. Old Man Took (Live Version)

87. Daisy Jane (Live Version)

88. Company (Live Version)

89. Hollywood (Live Version)

90. Sergeant Darkness (Live Version)

91. Amber Cascades (Live Version)

92. To Each His Own (Live Version)

93. Another Try (Live Version)

94. Ventura Highway (Live Version)

95. Sister Golden Hair (Live Version)

96. A Horse With No Name (Live Version)

Comments

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Johnny taylor
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alexandraabe l l a 1 7
❤❤❤❤❤
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I'm drinking from that silver cup. RIP, DP.
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I saw america at Framton comes alive
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Love this song my dad and I used to sing together whenever it was played on the radio we had a such blast. Miss u dad thinking of u now while listening to this on my I phone. Always will sing it in memory of my beloved dad.
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cherokeeprin c e s s 1 2 7
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I always believed in you I was so proud of you my baby Mike from mimi
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where is the itch tonight I will scratch it Mimi and Mike sunshine blueeyes my love
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Good song I haven't herd this song in a long time
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bcc131830
Saw these guys in Austin back in February. Still a great concert. The backing musicians -- guitarist, bassist, and drummer -- were all just as skilled as Beckley and Bunnell. They rocked up the arrangements to some of their best-known songs. Some really interesting arrangements .
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Pink
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mysteriousst r a n g e r s 8 6
❤❤❤❤❤
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mhollandermd
This band is as humble,down- t o - e a r t h & hard working, as they are talented. Their music remains relevant & shows in demand around the globe. Few professional s can stay on top of their game for more than 4 decades. Their music NEVER GETS OLD
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Thank God we have good music to listen to because today's noise is JUST THAT NOiSE��
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mysteriousst r a n g e r s 8 6
❤❤❤❤❤
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If it all about the music, we're has it gone.?
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ShariSez
JohnMargie6, Peek's been dead for several years. Bunnell had family in Western WA, Westport maybe? But don't know if they/he are still in the area. Not a clue where Beckley is even though he was my favorite America vocalist (until he showed up shitfaced for a concert at what was then called the Seattle Arena. Now what was called the Coliseum is called the Arena).
Report as inappropriate
I want you only and no one else my love mimi
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I agree brings back memories
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Awesome can't get much better
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Lov the band asome !
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tlemo49
They got me thru my college days....
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johnmargie6
Magic...brin g em' back
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johnmargie6
WOW, where the hell are they?
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alexandraabe l l a 1 7
❤❤❤❤❤
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sandymcleod1 7 5
❤❤❤❤❤
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I believe in you want you to believe in me too please call me or give me your phone number too
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we will make it I will always be here for you
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....another fine example of a great singer/songw r i t e r band from the only era that really matters....w h a t do you call today's music anyway ??
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alexandraabe l l a 1 7
❤❤❤❤❤
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America, great band. & name for the best country on earth. My opinion & I'm right. Well, Switzerland don't forget about them that's probably the best place to live!! They live in PEACE!!
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alexandraabe l l a 1 7
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nickyp51
Sad song
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Hey Joe, you can always change your name. Sweetie ❤❤❤��
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The horse's name was Friday.
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carolbeelynx
CA in the 70s, Best of my life! America certainly added to the niceness.
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America, enough said !!
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Two brothers . Their songs will be always be in our hearts. As one of the best. Rock song writers and performers ever!!!
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Life is a great tune.
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❤❤❤❤❤
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I say this is inspiring WOW.......
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The Music..is soothing like a big Faty...U Know....Hug! ! ! ! X x x x o o o o o o
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mike3345mike
Play here...VEGAS
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msg20026
Saw them last summer
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I work for wente vineyards in livermore california and was blessed to have America perform there the summer of 2011. What a great show What a great sound. Didn't realize we're the same age.
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Flying me back to Memphis with a US Marshal handcuffed me, I hope we get there after this misery. Going to the penitentiary
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❤❤❤❤❤
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Saw them about 20 yrs ago in the round @ Westbury Music Fair. Awesome! The other band on the bill---Poco! How cool was that?
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