Los Lobos takes tejano music into present at Roots N Blues N BBQ Festival

The Los Lobos sound is a mix of traditional spanish instruments, Tejano folk guitar and a classical rock guitar and drums.


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Los Lobos, an East Los Angeles founded band, is going to play a boot-stamping show at Columbia’s Roots N Blues N BBQ festival Sept. 28. The band consists of David Hidalgo, Louie Perez, Cesar Rosas, Conrad Lozano and Steve Berlin. Each band member plays a variety of instruments as well as many of the bandmates being vocalists. The Los Lobos sound is a mix of traditional spanish instruments, Tejano folk guitar and a classical rock guitar and drums.

For those new to the the band, their new album, La Bamba, released in 2018, is the perfect introduction to their music. La Bamba is a mix of Los Lobos’ 25 most popular songs as well as songs personally picked by the band and is a great starter kit to the band’s unique sound. The songs on the album span over the lifetime of the band and serve as a marker to the past achievement their music has made.

Los Lobos has won three Grammys and had been nominated for 11. In 1987, their cover of Ritchie Valen’s “La Bamba” gained them international attention in most notably the United States and Great Britain. In 1987, the song topped the charts for “Billboard Top 100” in August and September in the US as well as “UK Singles” in Great Britain. The band has been playing on stages since 1973 and has played far too many shows to count. Their show at Roots N Blues with be based off the 2015 album, Gates of Gold, in which the band uses music to speak of their life experiences.

While the band’s style of play and their use of instruments hasn't changed much over the last 45 years, the content of their songs and the meaning put behind each of them is new and fresh. Each album contains songs with meaning and each note feels like it has a purpose. Although some songs may miss the mark, as any artist will do over and over no matter the level of talent, the music put out by Los Lobos is genuine. Even in today's musical generation of pop, mumble rap, EDM and rock, the Tejano style of music calls you back while still feeling relevant.

Los Lobos’ music was always meant to capture the sound of rock and roll and blend it perfectly to the soul of traditional Hispanic music. Over their 45 year career, the genre agrees that they have succeeded. The band is still writing music and continues to use their sound to hit the hearts of listeners. The band takes their authentic Mexican style to the ears of nations and stands as an icon for their ethnicity and their history.

Edited by Alexandra Sharp | asharp@themaneater.com

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