Los Lobos: 50 Years Since the Chicano Rock Band Broke Through
Can you imagine lasting 50 years with someone, let alone a group of people, striving towards the same sound?
Well, ten iconic bands are celebrating 50 years together this year — which is no easy doing.
These are no fabricated bands like Daisy Jones and the Six — they are bands that formed in 1973 and are still going strong.
Among the 10 are Kiss, AC/DC, Heart, KC, and the Sunshine Band.
But the one that makes all of us Latinos proud is Los Lobos — the sound of the aspiration and dreams of the Chicano community. Oh, and they also play fierce rock and roll.
An iconic band
Since the band’s inception fifty years ago, Los Lobos has never forgotten their Mexican American heritage and has lifted Chicano music into the mainstream.
The sound of Los Lobos took traditional sounds of cumbia, boleros, norteños, and Tex-Mex and fused them with blues, rock, and R&B music.
The band’s music and sound became the soundtrack of East Los Angeles, their home, and beyond those rough streets.
When you hear “Don’t Worry Baby” or “La Bamba,” you know you are in Lobo territory
In 1973, original members David Hidalgo, Louie Pérez, Cesar Rosas, and Conrad Lozano started their careers by playing rock and roll versions of Mexican folk music in restaurants and at parties.
The band evolved in the 1980s as it made its way into L.A.’s burgeoning punk and college rock scenes. It received critical acclaim and won a Grammy for Best Mexican-American Performance for the song “Anselma” from its 1983 EP “…And a Time to Dance.”
A turning point came with the 1987 release of the Ritchie Valens biopic ‘La Bamba’
Los Lobo’s cover of Valens’s signature song topped the charts in the United States and England. The band followed this success by releasing their 1988 album “La Pistola y El Corazón,” a tribute to Tejano and mariachi music. It won a Grammy for Best Mexican-American Performance.
Since then, the band has released over a dozen full-length studio albums, including an album of Disney songs in 2009.
Their song “Mariachi Suite” from the 1995 film “Desperado” earned the band a Grammy for Best Pop Instrumental Performance.
“Native Sons,” the band’s 2021 album, saw Los Lobos return to the Grammy’s, winning Best Americana Album of 2022.
Los Lobos is now on a 50th-anniversary tour. So, if they play in your town, don’t miss them.
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