So the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominees were announced last week. Lots of interesting artists were on the list, but not the one artist that I was looking to see. That band? Los Lobos.
I have to imagine that there will be a line of artists volunteering to induct the band when the Hall comes to their senses. The band has performed with or been covered by artists ranging from Robert Plant to Tom Waits to Elvis Costello. Then, of course, there was the musical connection that the band had with Jerry Garcia and the Grateful Dead.
The band’s own music defies classification. Or, rather, they can write and play in a multitude of styles. A trip through their catalog will find everything from rock to folk to soul and the blues.
Their commitment to their heritage, alone, makes them worthy of induction. Although perhaps best known for their Ritchie Valens covers used in the movie “La Bamba”, they have consistently infused their music with a Tejano spirit. La Pistola y El Corazón, their 1988 album of traditional Mexican folk music, earned them one of several Grammy awards.
And their live shows? Forget about it. They are masterful musicians who can seamlessly work their way through every musical genre and situation. Looking for some cool videos for this post, I found clips of Los Lobos performing with everyone from Neil Young to the Grateful Dead and covering songs from the likes of Richard Thomspon, the Beatles, Jimmy Hendrix and Marvin Gaye.
It’s time to wake up, Hall nominating committee, and recognize Los Lobos as true legends of Rock and Roll. Who’s with me?
Here’s a quartet of videos featuring the boys from East L.A. First up are two originals, “Angel Dance” and “Little John of God,” the latter performed with Buddy Miller and Emmylou Harris. Then we’ve got two covers, an outstanding version of the Beatles “Tomorrow Never Knows” and Woody Guthrie’s “This Land Is Your Land,” performed with Jerry Garcia and Bob Weir.
About the author: Mild-mannered corporate executive by day, excitable Twangville denizen by night.