By Steve Morse
Boston Globe

A woman has finally cracked the boys' club known as the band Boston. The group has been around in various incarnations since the mid-'70s, but not until Kimberley Dahme appeared in the past year has a female been allowed into the musical boardroom.

Dahme, who lives in Nashville, will play bass and sing harmony vocals when Boston headlines tonight at the Tweeter Center. ''I came in late on the last album, then suddenly I was a member,'' says Dahme, who was discovered by Boston leader Tom Scholz when she was playing acoustic guitar at the Sit 'n Bull Pub in Maynard as part of the Tom Hambridge Band.

''Tom was at the gig with Gary Pihl, who plays guitar for Boston,'' says Dahme. ''They asked me, `Can you play bass?' I said, `I can learn.' But to be honest, I thought it was a pickup line.''

It wasn't. So Dahme, a California native who had released a couple of singer-songwriter albums on her own, bought a cheap bass at a pawn shop and learned how to play it. She called Scholz for an audition and ended up writing a song, ''With You,'' for Boston's latest album, ''Corporate America.''

''They took a chance on me, and I'll be indebted to them forever,'' says Dahme. ''When I play the bass lines on [Boston hit] `Don't Look Back,' I look over and see Tom Scholz and [singer] Brad Delp, and I just want to pinch myself. I've been a huge fan of Boston all my life.''

Dahme, who is in her early 30s, has two children, including a 7-month-old daughter. ''I was kind of scared that I might be canned from the tour because of the pregnancy,'' she says. ''But they were all so supportive. They said, `It will all work out fine.' And it has.''