By Jane Cohen and Bob Grossweiner On the concert touring circuit for 30-plus years, veteran rockers Gerry Beckley and Dewey Bunnell of America are...

By Jane Cohen and Bob Grossweiner

On the concert touring circuit for 30-plus years, veteran rockers Gerry Beckley and Dewey Bunnell of America are still at it. The pair have been on the road since March, which included an 18-city summer run with the band Chicago, and are now prepping a 2008 tour that will take them into next fall.

Their new outing launches Jan. 16 in Melbourne, FL, and is slated to conclude Oct. 12 with a double-night stand at Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, CT. The tour also takes America south of the border to Mexico.

America has been touring behind “Here & Now,” a 2-CD set that includes 12 new songs, their first new material in more than 20 years, produced by Adam Schlesinger (Fountains of Wayne) and James Iha (Smashing Pumpkins). “Here & Now” also includes a live disc of classic hits including “A Horse With No Name” and “Sister Golden Hair.”

Following in the mold of Carlos Santana, Tony Bennett, B.B. King and other experienced acts looking to reinvigorate their following, America teamed up with several current artists on the 12 new songs, including special guests Ryan Adams, Ben Kweller, Ira Elliot and Matthew Caws (Nada Surf), Jim James and Patrick Hallahan (My Morning Jacket), and Stephen Bishop and Mark Rozzo (Maplewood). The live CD, also 12 tracks, was recorded for XM Radio’s Performance Theater.

“One of the main attractions for Adam (Schlesinger) and James (Iha) was their initial love of the America sound,” said Beckley in a statement. “We have intentionally tried to keep that being the main focus. We’re not trying to emulate or go backwards but the initial ingredients have always remained common to us, which were an abundance of acoustic instrument sounds, a lot of vocal harmony and interesting melodies and lyrics in the forefront.”

“We’ve tried to maintain the elements of our own traditions so those things haven’t changed,” added Bunnell.

January 2008
16 – FL Melbourne – King Center for the Performing Arts
26 – MI Sturgis – Sturgis-Young Auditorium

February 2008
1-2 – ON Rama – Casino Rama
15 – AL Montgomery – Davis Theatre for the Performing Arts
16 – FL Silver Springs – Silver Springs Twin Mansions Theatre
21 – MEX Monterrey – Teatro de la Ciudad
23 – MEX Guadalajara – Teatro Diana

March 2008
7 – CA Valley Center – Harrahs Rincon Pavilion
8 – CA Roseville – Adventure Auditorium
13 – AL Anniston – Anniston Performing Arts Auditorium
14 – SC North Charleston – North Charleston Performing Arts Center
27 – VA Newport News – Ferguson Center for the Arts
28 – WV Charleston – Clay Center for the Arts & Sciences
29 – OH Springfield – Clark State Performing Arts Center
31 – WV Morgantown – Creative Arts Center of West Virginia U

April 2008
5 – CA Vacaville – Vacaville Performing Arts Theatre
6 – CA Santa Barbara – Granada Theatre
10 – OH Toledo – Stranahan Theatre
11 – OH Newark – Midland Theatre
12 – OH Marion – The Palace Theatre
13 – MI Benton Harbor – Mendel Mainstage at Lake Michigan College
18 – IN Warren- Andiamo Celebrity Theater

May 2008
1-2 – VA Alexandria – Birchmere
3 – OH Van Wert – Niswonger Performing Arts Center
16 – NJ Trenton – Patriots Theater at War Memorial

June 2008
21 – IA Cedar Rapids – Freedom Festival
24 – NY Lewiston – Artpark
26 – PA Jim Thorpe – Penns Peak
28 – OH Lakeside – Hoover Auditorium

July 2008
2 – CO Avon – Beaver Creek Resort
3 – CO Colorado Springs – Pikes Peak Center
4 – NV Henderson – Lake Las Vegas Resort

August 2008
20 – CA Cerritos – Cerritos Performing Arts Center

October 2008
11-12 – CT Uncasville – Mohegan Sun Casino

(The image accompanying this story is from QCTimes.com)