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"We went away by whatever means we went away and when we came back, we came back with whatever seasoning a human gets in their journey," Robert tells The Boot, adding it's just like riding a bike. "Not only do we ride the bicycle as well as we once did, we ride it better. We are more skilled, we can do a few more tricks on the bicycle. I love what this band can do today."
Founded in Florida after Raul Malo and Robert met and began playing music together, the Mavericks were very visible in country music beginning in 1991 for about a dozen years. They released six studio albums and charted a number of singles, including "All You Ever Do Is Bring Me Down," "Crying Shame" and "There Goes My Heart."
The group's new single, "Born to Be Blue," has a definite Latin rhythm to it and features Raul's distinctive vocals. The Miami-born musician joked at a recent benefit show for MusiCares and the W. O. Smith Music School, "I can't believe I'm saying this but we have a single going to radio."
The singer paused a moment before adding, "We signed with Valory Music [the current label home to Reba, Brantley Gilbert, Jewel and Justin Moore] ... I don't know what they're doing with us old f---ers on there but we're happy to be there!"
While "Blue" doesn't necessarily recreate the Mavericks' sound from the past, it does hint at the the group's classic period. The concert showcased some new material while including many of their best-known hits. Couples were happily dancing to the upbeat, Latin-infused tunes as well as the slow, romantic ballads throughout the show.
Eddie Perez, who joined the group in 2003, says of the new single, "When I heard this song I thought, 'Wow! That's got everything that's classic about the Mavericks in it but [also] something new.' It's just a great, well-written song. We did it two or three times in the studio and that was it. What our fans will hear is, from beginning to end, basically a live track."
"I've always thought of the Mavericks as one of those bands that had an inexplicable chemistry that resulted in a kind of magic on stage," Paul Deakin says of the group. "Possibly the relentless pursuit of fun helped the mojo along. I can't wait to get back on this horse again."
The Mavericks played their first official show as the newly-reunited group at the Stagecoach Festival in Indio, Calif., at the end of April. A new album is currently in the works but a release date has yet to be announced. On June 10, the group will be among the performers at the 2012 CMA Music Festival.