Two recent albums demonstrate how rock music and American roots genres are combined effectively, generating timeless songs. Celebrated band Los Lobos from East Los Angeles (California) is back with a new studio album five years after its last release. “Gates of Gold” (429 Records) presents a fabulous mix of memorable English-language rock, folk-rock, blues and Spanish-language songs based on Mexican cumbia and other traditions from south of the border.
The band’s lineup includes David Hidalgo on vocals, guitars, drums, bass and keyboards; Louie Perez on guitars and jarana (Mexican guitar from Veracruz used in son jarocho); Cesar Rosas on vocals, guitars, and bajo sexton (12-string Mexican bass guitar); Conrad Lozano on bass; and Steve Berlin on saxophones and keyboards.
“Gates of Gold” contains everlasting songs, instant classics, by one of the United States’ finest rock bands.
East Coast reggae band Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad has a second incarnation as an Americana band. Occasionally, the group releases an album that moves away from Jamaican music and shifts it towards American roots music. They did this a few years ago with an album titled Country and now with “Bright Days,” an easygoing Americana album inspired by bands like The Grateful Dead and Bob Dylan’s The Band.
Author: Angel Romero
Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel produced several TV 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 albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World.