Photo by Piero F Giunti

Los Lobos will open for Emmylou Harris at the Rose Music Center in Huber Heights, Ohio (about 60 minutes from Columbus) on Saturday, August 7. Tickets range from $23.50 to $72. More info here.

Los Lobos is just a few years shy of their 50th anniversary though the band would be the first to tell you that 2020 was unlike any other. Originally planning to spend much of the year on the road, when the pandemic shut down the touring industry, Los Lobos made good use of the time. Native Sons, which was recorded during the pandemic and released on July 30, is a 13-song covers album that pays homage to the artists that Los Lobos grew up listening to in East L.A. in the ’60s and ’70s. Included are tracks originally performed by Thee Midniters, Jackson Browne, Buffalo Springfield and War and while the band tried to stay true to the originals, there is a Los Lobos flavor throughout. The album also contains a Los Lobos original, the title track, “Native Sons” which the band shot a video for.

I recently had the chance to speak with Los Lobos sax player Steve Berlin for (read the whole interview here) and when I asked if he expected that Native Sons would get great reviews, here’s what he said:

“No. I was actually kind of nervous about the response, to be honest with you. Covers records are not hard. You pick good songs and play them. It’s kind of low-hanging fruit. That was my fear going into it, it would be perceived as such, especially for a band of our age. There’s a reason why Rod Stewart only does covers now. That was an honest fear of mine, that we’d be accused of being low-hanging fruit farmers. It’s very gratifying that the response has been great and it’s very, very gratifying that people see that we put some thought into it and tried to create something that’s not just those songs but a larger narrative. We tried to create something that said more than “here’s 14 songs that we like a lot.” When I say that almost everybody on that record is part of our DNA, that’s not a joke. All that stuff went into making us us. I’m a little surprised, I thought there would be somebody saying what I was thinking in my head but so far that hasn’t happened so I will say thank you to the gods of commerce and finance.”

According to the Rose Music Center website, Los Lobos will hit the stage at 8pm. If you’re not able to make this show, you can travel to Cleveland on November 3 and catch a Los Lobos headlining set at the Music Box Supper Club.