When the Mavericks released "In Time," their first new album in a decade, just over a year ago, the iconoclastic country group wasn't sure how it would be received or if there was even still an audience around for the group.
But after a Top 10 debut on Billboard's country charts and a wealth of critical plaudits, there's no question that the reunion was a success and the Mavericks are a going concern again.
"It's sticking on a couple of different levels," says the group's Paul Deakin, who co-founded the Mavericks during 1989 in Miami. "The main way that it's sticking is internally, within the band. The seven years off was time well-spent in our growth or whatever you want to call it. We're having a lot of fun playing again, which is what had kind of gone away when we disbanded.
"So it's proven to be a lot of fun musically, and the brotherhood is really stronger -- stronger than it's ever been, I think. We've come to realize that if we can take care of this internally, then we can weather the storms that come with being a band, and with being a non-genre band, which is a challenge."
Deakin, 54, says the Mavericks are working on music for a follow-up to "In Time," but the group's time on the road is primarily being dedicated to the group's 25th anniversary. He cracks that, "yeah, it means we're that much closer to death," but adds that there's a new appreciation for the group's legacy -- and the fact that it has one.
"The fact that we're still here, 25 years later -- that's a rarity amongst bands, that you're still able to make music for that long," Deakin says. "So this year we're really digging in. Last year we toured pretty much playing predominately 'In time.' We're still doing that this year, but we've also picked up a lot of songs we haven't played in many, many years from the early days, the Miami days.
"At sound checks we try to add a song every couple of days, just to throw something into the set so it's not the same every night. Being around 25 years we obviously have quite a good catalog to choose from, so to mix it up is fun for us every night -- and for the audience, too."
The Mavericks perform on Saturday, March 8, at the Royal Oak Music Theatre, 318 W. Fourth St. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $49.50 and $35. Call 248-399-2980 or visit www.royaloakmusictheatre.com.
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