New Los Lobos – “Made To Break Your Heart”


New Los Lobos!

September 25th will bring us Gates Of Gold, the first new Los Lobos studio album since 2010’s Tin Can Trust. On Monday, the boys debuted the opening track “Made To Break Your Heart” on It’s a gritty, crunchy rock number with Cezar Rojas and David Hidalgo harmonizing on vocals. And wait until the Hidalgo guitar solo explosion at 3:57. Wowee..

New Los Lobos music is always welcome in my world. You can pre-order Gates Of Gold here on Amazon. They’ve also posted the title track, a familiar Hidalgo shuffle to it, over on their Soundcloud page.

Recap: Los Lobos at Ovations LIVE! Showroom, June 15th

Have I ever mentioned that I love Los Lobos? I have? Well, I’ll say it again: I love Los Lobos. Last night, they stopped into town at the Wild Horse Pass Casino outside Phoenix, playing the relatively new and impressive Ovations Live Showroom (pat-on-the-back mention: no money spent on gambling!).

There are few things in this life that I enjoy more than listening to and watching David Hidalgo, Cesar Rojas, Louie Perez, Steve Berlin, and Conrad Lozano play their music (not to mention new drummer Enrique “Bugs” Gonzalez – whose infectious energy clearly rubbed off on the rest of the band).

The diverse crowd was charged up (plenty of quality people watching, both inside the showroom and especially outside in the smoky expanse of the casino floor), pretty ladies were dancing in the aisles, and all was right with the world…

Set List…

Los Lobos
Ovation Live Showroom
Wild Horse Pass Casino
Chandler, AZ
June 15, 2012

La Pistola y El Corazon
Las Ojos de Pancha
Arizona Skies >
Borinquen Patria Mia
Sabor a Mi
Shakin’ Shakin’ Shakes
The Neighborhood
Chuco’s Cumbia
Come On Let’s Go
Wicked Rain
Yo Canto *
Papa was a Rolling Stone > *
I Can’t Understand > *
Oye Como Va *
Volver Volver

La Bamba >
Good Lovin >
La Bamba

* Marcos Reyes from War on percussion

Los Lobos: Live at the Furthur Festival, 1996

The first time I saw Los Lobos live was August 4th, 1996 as part of the Furthur Festival, launched by Bob Weir and Mickey Hart (two surviving members of the Grateful Dead) the year after Jerry Garcia’s passing.

Along for the short summer tour was Ratdog (Weir’s band), Mickey Hart’s Mystery Box, Los Lobos, Hot Tuna, and Bruce Hornsby.

Phoenix was the last stop on the tour. It was August. It was hot. And I was there.

The Los Lobos set sparked a lifetime love of the band for me. The set was only 45 minutes long, but the rich and eclectic nature of the music reeled me in. Rock n’ roll, blues, traditional Mexican, a Hendrix cover, and of course what I came to know as their signature Dead cover of “Bertha” (done better than any band outside of the Grateful Dead).

So I was stoked to come across this short but power-packed set (not to mention it’s a soundboard recording) from that very hot summer day in 1996, and I’m excited to share it with you all.

Los Lobos: an American treasure. And they’re still out on the road. I’ll be catching them again in a couple of short weeks – June 15th at Wild Horse Pass Casino here in the Phoenix area. Life’s too short not to.

Los Lobos
August 4th, 1996
Desert Sky Pavilion, Phoenix
Furthur Festival (last show of the tour)

Download ZIP of the whole set.

Angel Dance
I Walk Alone
Spanish Castle Magic
I Got to Let You Know
Los Ojos de Pancha
I Got Loaded (w/ Lovelight verse)
Mas y Mas
Bertha (w/ Pete Sears on keyboards)

New Deer Tick – “Miss K”

It’s brand new. It’s catchy. I can dance to it. And it’s DEER TICK!

come on miss k
wrap your lovin arms around me
talk dirty
turn me on
let’s get goin

“Miss K” is the newly released first single from Deer Tick’s forthcoming album Divine Providence, due October 25th on Partisan Records.

Loooving this.

You can get a free download of the song here on The boys have been having a great time in the studio – this week they’ve been visited by Steve Berlin of Los Lobos and Hardy Morris of Dead Confederate. Their album will feature plenty of other special guests I’m sure. New Deer Tick!! Wahoo!!

Listen to “Miss K”:


♠ Free Download on

♠ Deer Tick’s very active Facebook page and Twitter.

♠ Last but not least, a cool post from Teenage Kicks with a plethora of Deer Tick covers (Stones, John Prine, the Boss, and even Sean Kingston).

Los Lobos returning to Arizona on May 5th

Last summer, thanks to the passing of Arizona’s anti-immigration bill SB1070, many artists made the decision to boycott the state. One of my very favorite bands, Los Lobos, was one of those who decided to say no to Arizona. They were scheduled to perform June 10th, 2010 at the Talking Stick Resort & Casino (located just east of Scottsdale on the Salt River Pima – Maricopa Indian Community), but cancelled the gig about a week before, releasing the following statement:

“We support the boycott of Arizona. The new law will inevitably lead to unfair racial profiling and possible abuse of people who just happen to look Latino. As a result, in good conscience, we could not see ourselves performing in Arizona. We regret the inconvenience this may have caused the Salt River Pima Maricopa Indian Community, Casino Arizona, Talking Stick Resort and our fans, but we feel strongly that it is the right thing to do.”

Not much has changed since last summer, although the most controversial portion of the bill (requiring law enforcement to check the immigration status of anyone they stop or arrest) is currently tied up in federal courts. But lo and behold, I discovered this morning that there is a Los Lobos gig scheduled for Cinco de Mayo (um, that’s May 5th, gringos), once again at the Talking Stick Resort.

So as a rabid Los Lobos fan, I’m thrilled that they’ve decided to return to Arizona. But why the change of heart? I’m fixin’ to find out.

Could it be because the Salt River Pima – Maricopa reservation is considered Indian territory, not technically part of Arizona? Or did they realize that maybe the most effective way to show their disdain for the law is to come to Arizona and speak out directly? I’m interested to find out. But regardless, my thirst for live Lobos will soon be quenched…

So Arizona Lobos fans – May 5thTalking Stick! See you there…

Two Times One Night: Los Lobos at the Compound Grill

Los Lobos delivered as expected last night at the Compound Grill in Scottsdale. The wife was a great sport, and powered through two full shows with me – an 8pm dinner show and a 11pm late show. Friends Jen and Brian also rocked out all night along with us.

The Compound Grill is a brand new venue, having been open only a few months now, and it was built with live music (and good food) in mind. So the atmosphere was just fantastic – a small club feel, friendly and attentive staff, and a great sound system.  The early show was sold out with the max capacity of 200 people, so it felt like the coolest private party I’d ever been to.  Eating dinner, putting back a pint or two, with Los Lobos as the house band.

After the first show, most of the folks cleared out, leaving those of us who were in it for the two shows. I was expecting it to fill up again, but the late crowd ended up being probably 80-100 people tops.  This only elevated that private party feel. Guitarist Cesar Rojas set the celebratory atmosphere from the very beginning – toasting “Salud!” with a glass of red wine. He toasted “Salud” throughout the night, right up through the last tune of the night as the clock ticked past 1am (“Bertha”).

The highlights were many. The cover tunes included a blistering 1-2 punch of Neil Young’s “Down by the River” into Jimi’s “Are You Experienced?” in the first show (jaw dropping solos by David Hidalgo, Cesar, and Louie Perez); a great cover of Howlin’ Wolf’s “300 Pounds of Joy”; Traffic’s “Dear Mr. Fantasy”; another Jimi cover, “Red House” near the end of the late show; and of course their popular take on the Grateful Dead’s “Bertha”.

Another cool moment: slow dancing with my wife at the foot of the stage, as Lobos played a 50’s doo-wop ballad, “Daddy’s Home”. Dancing slow with the lady, and looking up to see Los Lobos playing five feet away? Priceless.

Of course, Los Lobos has a rich catalog to draw from – and the night featured old and new (full set list below) – including great versions of “Kiko”, “Evangeline”, “I Got Loaded”, and the always raucous “La Bamba”/”Good Lovin'” combo, which whipped the dance floor into a frenzy, and Hidalgo inviting a few young ladies to dance on the stage.

I always get instantly nostalgic after a great live music experience – so tonight feels a little bittersweet. The feeling I get while watching Los Lobos live is one I’d like to carry around with me every day of my life. If you’re one of the many who haven’t seen Los Lobos live, please put it on your bucket list and find out what this feeling is all about…


Cesar threw a few CD’s into the crowd last night. My wife grabbed a hold of one – their latest CD, Los Lobos Goes Disney. We listened today, and the album is a blast. It also contains a slow, beautiful tune called “Not in Nottingham” (from Robin Hood).  Check it out…


Buy the MP3 of Not In Nottingham

Check out the whole album:

February 20th, 2010
The Compound Grill, Scottsdale, AZ

8pm Show

La Pistola y El Corazon
Saint Behind the Glass
I Wan’na Be Like You (The Monkey Song)
One Time One Night
Happy Birthday – electric
Chuco’s Cumbia
Dream in Blue
Down By The River (Neil Young) >
Are You Experienced? (Jimi Hendrix) >
Kiko and the Lavender Moon
Let’s Say Goodnight
Ay Te Dejo en San Antonio
Soy Mexico Americano
Volver, Volver
Road to Gila Bend
Don’t Worry Baby

Mas y Mas

11pm Show

La La La La La (Blendells)
Luz De Mi Vida
Whiskey Trail
Why Do You Do?
Wicked Rain
The Neighborhood >
300 Pounds of Joy (Howlin’ Wolf)
Dear Mr. Fantasy (Traffic)
That Train Don’t Stop Here
Daddy’s Home (Shep & the Limelites)
Red House (Jimi Hendrix)
I Got Loaded
La Bamba > Good Lovin’ > La Bamba (Ritchie Valens)

Bertha (Grateful Dead)

Los Lobos – Live & Late Night this Saturday in Scottsdale

This is already the perfect time of year here in the Phoenix area – sunny, 75 degrees, and Spring Training about to kick into high gear – but when I got the news earlier this week that Los @#@! Lobos will be in town this Saturday, I about spun around and did the splits James Brown style – and that is not an easy feat.

This Saturday nightLos Lobos will play not one, but two shows at one of the valley’s newer live music venues: The Compound Grill in north Scottsdale. They’re slated for a 8:00 show and a late night, down n’ dirty 11:00 show.

Look, if you’re in Arizona, and especially if you’ve never seen Los Lobos – a national treasure of a band – you need to make your way to the Compound Grill on Saturday night. Do yourself and your friends a favor, and experience a quintessential American band: roots, Tex-Mex, 50’s rock & roll, Latin, Americana, rhythm & blues… there are few things as satisfying as the live Los Lobos experience.

I know this is the ultimate fluff piece, but seriously people, look to the sidebar, Los Lobos are permanently enshrined in the Ickmusic Hall of Fame!

Long Live Los Lobos! And see you Saturday night!

Buy tickets from the Compound Grill Web Site.

A Nudge in the Right Direction


Happy New Year, folks. I’ll get into the groove of posting some tasty tunes soon, but for now, here’s a few nudges and news nuggets to keep you occupied.

Oh, Twitter. I decided to join up and blast out random music-related musings at any moment’s notice.  If you’re on Twitter, and feel like “following” me and my music-obsessed brain, check out my profile here, and let’s connect. I’m keeping it music-centric, so you won’t be hearing from me when I’m “tired” or “working” or “taking a dump”.

On to the nudges…

  • Ann Powers, a music writer for the LA Times, was summoned to the Hall of the Mountain King, or in this case, Prince’s pad off Mulholland Drive. Prince shared his plans for ’09, which include 3 albums (‘MPLSOUND’, ‘The Lotus Flower’, and protege Bria Valente’s record). Prince also explains that “Jehovah’s Witnesses haven’t voted for their whole inception.” I did not know that.
  • Mr. Malchus from the Popdose crew shares my love for the Los Lobos song “Be Still”. It was even his wedding “song”, along with Bruce’s “Book of Dreams”. Malchus and I – same wavelength…
  • Speaking of Lobos, Gregor shares a show from ’84 on Captain’s Dead. Great to see love for the Lobos on the blogs.
  • I am not a Zune person, but seems the 30 GB Zunes did not like the leap year, and decided to lock up. Any of you out there experience the Zap of the Zune?
  • Last, and definitely not least, former Eurythmics-man Dave Stewart is releasing his own line of diamond-studded vibrators. How about that for extraordinarily random news? Oh, and be careful with that thing, ladies. I know diamonds are a girl’s best friend, but they also cut glass. Easy does it.

Live Los Lobos

You know, this blog will turn four years old this year, and it turns out I’ve never graced the pages with live Los Lobos before. Huh? That’s just wrong.

Here’s a great soundboard show from last year’s Edmonton Blues Festival. The crowd is great, and they go bonkers when the band pulls out Neil Young’s “Cinnamon Girl” for the encore. Another highlight is David Hidalgo’s guitar wizardry on “Mas y Mas”.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again (and again): Los Lobos are an American treasure, and hands down one of the best bands around.

For the whole show, download the ZIP.

Los Lobos @ the Edmonton Blues Festival
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
August 27th, 2007

1. Pigfoot Shuffle
2. The Neighborhood
3. Don’t Worry Baby
4. Evangeline
5. David Hidalgo intro to Fat Man
6. The Fat Man
7. Manny’s Bones
8. Let’s Say Goodnight
9. Ay Te Dejo en San Antonio
10. Volver, Volver
11. I Got Loaded
12. Mas y mas (mp3)
13. Cinnamon Girl (mp3)

Keep up with the boys at Los