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].
Author: Angel Romero
Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel produced several specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music and electronic music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World, Lektronic Soundscapes, and Mindchild Records. Angel is currently based in Durham, North Carolina.