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America Biography

Home > Music > A > America > Biography

Years Active: 1970 – present
Genres: Folk Rock, Soft Rock, Country Rock

America is an American folk rock band, composed originally of members Gerry Beckley, Dewey Bunnell, and Dan Peek.

The three members were barely past their teenage years when they became a musical sensation during 1972, scoring #1 hits and winning a Grammy for best new musical artist.

They released their platinum certified debut, album “America” in 1971 and it peaked at #1 on the Billboard album chart in the US. It produced two hit singles, "A Horse With No Name," which spent three weeks at #1 on the Billboard singles chart (it also peaked at #3 on the Adult Contemporary chart), while "I Need You" hit #9 on the Billboard singles chart and #7 on the Adult Contemporary chart.

America's second album, “Homecoming,” was released in November 1972, peaked at #9 and was later certified platinum. The group reached the Top 10 again with "Ventura Highway." Other singles, including Peek's “Don't Cross the River” and Beckley's "Only In Your Heart," were only modestly successful, and the group won a Grammy Award for Best New Artist of 1972.

After the disappointing commercial performance of their 1973 album “Hat Trick,” America was able to secure the services of George Martin, and Geoff Emerick who played a major role in shaping the sound of the Beatles. Martin would go on to produce their next seven albums. They scored hits during this period with songs such as, "Sister Golden Hair" (which reached #1), "Tin Man," "Daisy Jane" and "Lonely People."

The band suffered a heavy blow when Dan Peek quit the group in 1977, right at its apex, but Beckley and Bunnell returned America to the Top 10 as a duo with "You Can Do Magic," from their album “View from the Ground,” in 1982.

On January 16, 2007, America released Here & Now, the band's first major label studio album in over twenty years