October 2, 2012 |
In a career creeping up on four decades, the Los Angeles quintet Los Lobos has left many high-water marks. But should the need arise to explain the group's greatness to future generations, there's no question which of its 15 albums would end up in the time capsule. Kiko , whose 20th anniversary the group marked by playing the complete album at the Keswick Theatre on Sunday night, was Los Lobos' Achtung Baby , an artistic breakthrough that both encapsulated and obliterated everything that had come before.
August 1, 2010
Pop Tin Can Trust (Shout! Factory . ) With the second song on their new album, "On Main Street," Los Lobos celebrate the joys of home and community, specifically their own East Los Angeles stomping grounds. Over a slinky, R&B-tinged vamp, David Hidalgo oozes his usual brown-eyed soul as he sings in the sweetly plaintive tenor that is one of the band's most endearing hallmarks: "Nothing better than running down the boulevard/ Getting a little dirt on my shoes/ With my brothers and sisters hanging all around/ Chasing away all my blues.
March 10, 2007 |
Taj Mahal doesn't work too hard these days. Perched beneath a big ol' floppy straw hat and a generously-sized Hawaiian shirt, the 64-year-old bluesman sits down when he plays guitar and lets a chorus pedal do all the heavy lifting. These days his voice sounds like he swallowed an alligator and washed it down with gasoline. Which was just fine with the capacity crowd of middle-aged boomers who have turned to his music as comfort food ever since his incendiary performance on the 1968 Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus, which, as it happens, aired locally on public television on the eve of his Thursday-night appearance at the Keswick, where he opened for those beloved ambassadors from the barrio, Los Lobos.
October 4, 2005 |
The acoustic instruments arranged on the Verizon Hall stage made it obvious: For this performance, Los Lobos would play up the "cultural" angle. Neither the brawny Chicano rock hopefuls of the '80s nor the playful studio experimentalists of the '90s were present at the Kimmel Center Sunday night. These were veteran musicians exploring their ethnic roots on a tour of upscale theaters. As singer-guitarist Cesar Rosas said of the traditional material that began their set: "These were pop songs, like 50 years ago. They're folk songs now. " But deep down, Los Lobos are too stubborn a bar band to stoop to the lackadaisical strumming and respectful nostalgia of folkie revivalism.
June 18, 2004 |
When most veteran rock acts decide that it's time to do an album full of cameos by their many admirers, it usually means the creative tank is empty, and obsolescence is at hand. Thankfully, Los Lobos are not like most. "Most of those kinds of records suck," says Cesar Rosas, the goateed singer and guitarist for the East Los Angeles band, which celebrates the start of its fourth decade with The Ride (Hollywood), featuring guest spots from Richard Thompson, Ruben Blades and Mavis Staples, among others.
June 21, 2003 |
The noirish Latino rumble of Los Lobos and the blustery roar of Buddy Guy in the Kimmel Center's Verizon Hall on Thursday night were the sound of the blues at its red-hot, wiggly and weirdest best. Los Lobos, the first to perform, have refined their fusion of Los Angeleno punk, Mexican roots music, and ambient noise to include an eerie psychedelic feel. But each song's innate sadness is clear and blue. Singer-guitarist Cesar Rosas brought blistering, fuzz-toned solos to the fluty "Hearts of Stone" and the Mexicali rockabilly of "Shakin' Shakin' Shakes," stretching out each with a '60s-mystical feel.
March 27, 1999 |
Cesar Rosas is the Los Lobo least likely to surprise you. But also, the most reliable: looking out from behind trademark shades at the Five Spot on Thursday night, goatee partially hiding a double chin, the left handed guitarist put on a 90 minute show short on experimentation and long on straight-to-the-solar-plexus blues rockers. The east Los Angeles band that Rosas has been a charter member of since 1973 -- and who have been the most consistently great (take that, R.E.M.
March 19, 1999 |
After nearly three decades as a member of Los Lobos, Cesar Rosas is getting a chance to see what it's like to play the lone wolf. "This is the first time I've done anything like this. It's very scary," Rosas said of his solo venture from his home in Los Angeles. ". . . I'm not going to have my [Los Lobos] buddies. It's different. We'll see what happens. " Rosas is touring with a four-man band in support of Soul Disguise (Rykodisc), his first solo album. The trek will take them to the Five Spot on Thursday night.
October 14, 1996 |
Los Lobos, Medeski, Martin and Wood and Nil Lara have each done time with the H.O.R.D.E. and Furthur festivals, the traveling "jam band" jamborees too often about extended instrumental noodling, white kids with dreadlocks and other unfortunate by-products of neo-hippie excess. But though all three of the acts that played the Electric Factory on Saturday - with Los Lobos headlining - make organic, groove-oriented music, each plays with a disciplined intelligence that puts the song before the solo.
September 25, 1993 |
Amazing was the word most often used on the stage of Mann Music Center Thursday night to describe the lineup at WXPN-FM's second annual Five-Star Night, and it wasn't just hype. In theory, any of the show's four principals - archetypal '70s singer- songwriter Jackson Browne, former head Talking Head David Byrne, virtuosic Mexican American rock band Los Lobos and performance raconteur Laurie Anderson - could have been a legitimate headliner. And fifth wheel Suddenly, Tammy! is going places: The Lancaster band signed a contract with Warner Bros.