America has no trouble filling a concert with its radio hits from the '70s.
Songs like ''A Horse With No Name,'' ''Tin Man,'' ''Lonely People'' and ''Sister Golden Hair'' topped the adult contemporary and / or top 40 charts back in the day and still are staples on oldies stations.
But that doesn't mean that Gerry Beckley and Dewey Bunnell, who started America with Dan Peek more than 40 years ago, are content to rest on their laurels.
The pair has continued to make new music. ''Here and Now,'' produced by Adam Schlesinger (Fountains of Wayne) and James Iha (Smashing Pumpkins), featured guest appearances by Ryan Adams, Ben Kweller and members of My Morning Jacket, and 2011's ''Back Pages'' featured America interpreting songs written by a diverse collection of artists.
''Although we're not completely inexperienced in performing cover songs, we've never done a whole album of them,'' Beckley said during a telephone interview from his home in Los Angeles. ''It seemed like the right time. We've certainly written a fair share of our own material, but we are fans of songwriting and it seemed like a nice fit.''
Instead of tackling the ''Great American Songbook'' as some of their contemporaries have done, Beckley and Bunnell decided to follow a simple criteria of picking songs and songwriters they like. That meant picking tunes by songwriters like Paul Simon (''America'') and James Taylor (''Something in the Way She Moves'') but also opting for more contemporary acts like the Gin Blossoms (''Till I Hear It From You'') and Fountains of Wayne ("A Road Song'').
WHERE: Stambaugh Auditorium, 1000 Fifth Ave., Youngstown
WHEN: 8 p.m. Friday
HOW MUCH: Tickets range from $30 to $45
With the familiarity of some of the songs on ''Back Pages,'' it allows America to add some new songs to the set that still feel like old favorites to its fans, who grew up with those songs as well as ''Ventura Highway'' and ''You Can Do Magic.''
''I think we do them justice,'' Beckley said. ''How we present them is up to par. We don't want to do a whole show of cover tunes and we don't need to do that, but it adds a nice air to the show.''
And whether America has a new album or not, the old favorites remain the focal point of the show.
''Seventy percent of the show is hits,'' he said. ''That's the good news. That's never a bad thing.''
America continues to maintain a busy touring schedule, not only in the United States but overseas. Italy, Australia and the Philippines are just a few of the markets where the band's popularity remains high.
''They love ballads in the Philippines,'' Beckley said. ''They're melody crazy. And once they're on board, they're fans for life.''
This is America's 42nd year as a band, and Beckley and Bunnell were friends before they started making music. He credited that friendship and their mutual respect for the band's longevity.
''We've been very fortunate. It's taken an incredible amount of hard work and riding it out through the tougher times, but I'm amazed I've made a living doing this. And every night there are a few thousand people there who are going to remind you what your music means to them. I think it's a pretty good deal.''