Hey! It's good to be live. Just ask Pablo Cruise. That's the tentative name for a new compilation CD the band is putting together in its California studio.
"We're really not sure what we're going to title this new album, but it will be all our latest live performances," said band member Cory Lerios in a telephone interview this week.
The album is to be released next year.
In the meantime, you can catch all the excitement Pablo Cruise evokes when the band hits town July 31 for an outdoor concert at the Clover Island Inn in Kennewick.
And when that happens, you'll be introduced to Pablo Cruise's latest addition -- bass player Larry Antonio, who joins the original cast of Lerios, Steve Price and David Jenkins.
And you can be sure the band will be ready to rock, Lerios said.
"You're going to love our new bass player. Larry is a fabulous musician," Lerios said. "He's one of the most sought-after bass players in the world, and we're very excited for him to join Pablo Cruise."
The band hit the charts in 1975 and became known for its ultrasmooth and wholesome California sound often referred to as, "Music to watch sports by." And it wasn't long before its songs became familiar tracks heard on ABC's Wide World of Sports, CBS's Sports Spectacular andNBC's Sportsworld. Those songs include Whatcha Gonna Do?, Love Will Find A Way, Don't Want to Live Without It, Cool Love, A Place in the Sun and I Go To Rio.
With the passing of more than three decades since the band first hit the airwaves, the guys of Pablo Cruise might look a bit older, but they haven't lost an ounce of the rhythm and energy it takes to perform.
Their last visit to the Tri-Cities was in 2008 at Clover Island, where they played to a packed parking lot of fans with the Columbia River as a backdrop.
"We love playing there at Clover Island," Lerios said. "The last time we were there, we had a great time with fans and we're looking forward to coming back."
The lion's share of Pablo Cruise songs was created by the writing team of Lerios and Jenkins. The band formed in 1973 and had a string of hit albums, two of which went platinum.
By the mid-1980s, record sales started to fall, so the members decided to go their separate ways, though there was never an ugly break-up, just a need to go in different directions, Lerios said.
He took his songwriting skills to TV, where he produced and scored music for various shows such as Baywatch, Max Headroom and Police Story.
He earned several Emmy nominations for his work on 11 seasons of Baywatch and won the Emmy in 1998 for his co-music direction for the soap opera Days of Our Lives.
Lerios, Jenkins and Price decided to get back together in 2004, setting a few concert dates and touring on the occasional weekend.
Lerios described the split as a 20-something-year hiatus, and now they're back together performing fewer concerts than in their heyday but still "enjoying the hell out of live performances," he said.
The Tri-City show will include a few new songs, but mostly it'll be the vintage good stuff, Lerios said.
"Those old songs are still the best," he said.
Tickets for the Pablo Cruise concert are $20 and available at Clover Island Inn's front desk or to order by phone call 586-0541.
*Dori O'Neal: 582-1514; firstname.lastname@example.org