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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, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

America came to concert at a small intiatevenue here in Roges Arkansas.The plac only held 1150 people and I wast smart enough to buy my tickets in advance.I was DENIED at the gate. Bummer. Says a lot for Amerca though What a great band
fastcar3829
Drink up folks, the silver cup runneth over! America or wherever you may reside.
I LOVE America; my favorite is Ventura Highway.
eastabdan
Some errors on the printed lyrics for this one, but what an awesome tune! Takes me back to college days, my girlfriend, and....
Great stuff tonight on this station! No goen to Caroline iin my mind! Love it!
It's fun to discover that many songs you like are written by the same person.....Y o u Can Do Magic written by Russ Ballard. For fun, google his song list...inter e s t i n g group of hits.
Good memories .no songs about killing
loving the sweet, honesty in the songs!
historyboy8
Unfortunatel y my generation has nothing approaching this. It is a shame with the generations going downhill like this.
chrisgranell i
Classic
America and their Greatest Hits - every song is like reliving very good days all over again...than k you Pandora for keeping these memories alive and well....
Wish my generation had music like this.
tsmi5
Great Album! Brings back memories of childhood. Not bad for a bunch of Air Force Brats. ;)
Had the History Greatest Hits L.P. in High School. Sis Golden Hair, Tin Man, Lonely People and the other tunes on that album are amazing...lo v e them all.
Memories...w h e n I was in the Navy, I took a pretty, petite Irish redheaded fire cracker name Ellenor Oconnell to Anaheim Stadium and saw the Beach Boys, America, Santana and ? (some other act) in the summer of '76. Prefect weather, sunset, warm breeze, a little buzz and the perfect companion made for an awesome day. May you all enjoy such a day...and sail on the memory for time and tides to come. Sailor Joe
Yeah I admit I was a closet fan (a bit like ABBA in '80s) my bag was the Beatles, CCR, Cream, Eagles & of course Lynrd Skynrd, but these fellas got my foot a-tappin'. Esp after a few beers.
america0-- was suppose to play in 1969 for the CRYSTAL LAKE CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL prom--3>...
Love Daisy Jane...
I got that album. : ) ♪♪♪♪
Best soft rock ever,then ELO
bginger53
Gosh songs back then were so peaceful
Merica
cej1963
Fun fact that not everyone knows: Phil Hartman of SNL fame (who was murdered by his wife) is the artist who designed the Greatest Hits album cover.
Love this song!!!!!!!
donvic4
I have seen them twice in the past few years and they are amazing! Will see them again if they tour close by.
tvanhorne6
The guys are still touring and still bringing great joy to their fans of all ages. They are exactly what they appear to be on stage; great people who love what they do. The fact that they aren't in the Rock Hall is an embarrassmen t to American Rock-n-Roll. Go see them live while you still can. They never disappoint.
love America!
to day america is playing at our casino it is so kul love the the music i hope i get to see them. love you guys :)
Can I please get another copy of America here & nowby sony/bmg one of our druggie neighbors likes to help himself to our discography when we're away from home. So sorry folks we have new locks now. jrh
These guys were phenomenal acoustic guitar players and their music defined folk-rock for my generation.
slovakgirl
i can remember trying to play air guitar while swaying back and forth to this song....i was a little girl with long hair and loved how it felt to sway back and forth to this music. what great memories - all because of a great song!
Don't read this because it actually works.you will be kissed on the nearest possible Friday by the love of your life.Tomorro w will be the best day of your life.However if you don't post this you will die in two days.This is so scary put this on at least 5 songs in 143 minutes. When done press f6 and your lovers name will cone not he screen in big letters.This is so scary because it actually works!
This song was GREAT in the 70's and still GREAT today.
riverman172
I could be wrong but I think Phil Hartman designed the greatest hits album cover. Just some pointless info for ya.
they came to our casino and i didnt get to see the love them
going to see them today!!!
this was the song back in the '70's
kimjo727
One of my favorite songs.
Saw these guys with Roger McGuinn back in the day. Pulled off this one real well. Excellent summer cruising tunes!
How can you not enjoy this song?
As a teen living in LA I dreamed of riding my motorcycle up Ventura hwy 101 to Oregon. At 18 I lived my dream riding a Goldwing to Oregon and never looking back. That Ventura highway called me!

If you follow the directions and repost this message 4 times on any song within 10 minuets you will come in contact with good fortune. Go to http://givem e m o n e y f o r n o r e a s o n . w e e b l y . c o m / , click anywhere and type (signal 5) then go Wikipedia and click random article and your good fortune will be in relation to that article. ****IMPORTAN T * * * * FOLLOW the directions with COMPLETE precision, visiting the websites in the correct order. //got a wiki about penguins :p, wonder what that translates to
Reminds me of my visit to SoCal! Dreams come true!
ron4194
Don't read this because it actually works.you will be kissed on the nearest possible Friday by the love of your life.Tomorro w will be the best day of your life.However if you don't post this you will die in two days.This is so scary put this on at least 5 songs in 143 minutes. When done press f6 and your lovers name will cone not he screen in big letters.This is so scary because it actually works!
mb13881
Lucky, saw these fellows when they would play local gigs in and around
London when they were in high school at RAF Ruislip school was London Certral often said by my buds & girls, These guys have a great future, go figure! Awesome to still see & hear the boys.
just curious guys, as I browsed around the America's I didin't noticed the song All my Life. from what album does it belong? just asking :)
bencreedcome d y
whoever posts that stupid horseshit about put this on at least 5 songs in 143 min.... I did not do it and I'm still alive oooooooh, spookey. You are a dunce. Please do not breed!
saw these guys with Three Dog Night in 1986 ,what a great show
hey tonymac22,wh o are you trying to fool?,well I am not the one
1

Don't read this because it actually works.you will be kissed on the nearest possible Friday by the love of your life.Tomorro w will be the best day of your life.However if you don't post this you will die in two days.This is so scary put this on at least 5 songs in 143 minutes. When done press f6 and your lovers name will cone not he screen in big letters.This is so scary because it actually works!
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