Isidro “El Indio” López, one of the fathers of Tejano music, died on August 16.
He was 75.
López was born to Mexican parents in Texas. He started playing music when he was
in his 20s. Proud of his Mexican-Apache origins, he called himself “el Indio”
(the Indian). In 1956 he formed the Isidro Lopez Orchestra. Using the orchestra,
he brought the big band style of performance to conjunto music, creating the
Tejano sound. He toured with his “orquestas” on both sides of the border. López was the subject of Filmmaker Héctor Galán‘s documentary Songs of the
Homeland which featured López and his band. López was inducted into the Tejano
Music Hall of Fame in San Antonio in 1982. In 2002, Governor Rick Perry presented
him with the Tejano Music Awards Lifetime Achievement Award at the Alamodome in
[Obituary courtesy of the
Folk Alliance. Photo courtesy of Arhoolie Records].