Legendary band Los Lobos will perform Sunday afternoon May 6th with opening act Run River North. Open to the public at 1:00pm, the show begins at 2:00pm on the outside stage in the festival’s Diversity Drive just north of the Bentonville Square. General admission to the concert is free and open to the public but space is limited and available on a first-come, first-serve basis. One hundred VIP tickets are available for $30 and include guaranteed admission and a premium viewing area. Limited space will be reserved for BFF Sponsor Badge Holders on a first come first serve basis.
Back in 2003, when Los Lobos was celebrating the 30th Anniversary of their humble beginnings as a garage band in East L.A., Rolling Stone summed up their distinctive, diverse, freewheeling fusion of rock, blues, soul and Mexican folk music: “This is what happens when five guys create a magical sound, then stick together…to see how far it can take them.” Originally called Los Lobos del Este (de Los Angeles), a play on a popular norteno band called Los Lobos del Norte, the group originally came together from three separate units.
Lead vocalist/guitarist Hidalgo, whose arsenal includes accordion, percussion, bass, keyboards, melodic, drums, violin and banjo, met Perez at Garfield High in East LA and started a garage band. Rosas, who had his own group, and Lozano launched a power trio. “But we all hung out because we were friends and making music was just the natural progression of things,” says Perez, the band’s drummer. “Like if you hang around a barbershop long enough, you’re going to get a haircut.” Berlin is Los Lobos’ saxophonist; flutist and harmonica player who met the band while still with seminal L.A. rockers The Blasters.
Los Lobos were already East L.A. neighborhood legends, Sunset Strip regulars and a Grammy winning band (Best Mexican American/Tejano Music Performance) by the time they recorded How Will the Wolf Survive. Three decades, two more Grammys, the global success of “La Bamba” and thousands of rollicking performances across the globe later, Los Lobos is surviving quite well — and still jamming with the same raw intensity as they had when they began in that garage in 1973. The bands latest album is entitled Gates of Gold.
The festival will also screen LA BAMBA (1987), as part of its Legacy Series lineup, on Saturday, May 5 at 2:00pm as part of its Fiesta at the Fest, Cinco de Mayo celebration. Starring Lou Diamond Phillips, the biopic follows the life and career of Chicano rock and roll legend Richie Valens. The original motion picture soundtrack featured the Los Lobos cover of Valens’ “La Bamba,”and made the tune a hit for whole new generation.
Los Angeles-based indie-folk rock band Run River North will play the opening set. Formerly known as Monsters Calling Home, the band formed in 2011, and their early works were inspired by the band members’ parent’s Asian-American heritage. The band performed at venues across Southern California, and after recording a music video in their own Honda cars, they were secretly booked for a gig on Jimmy Kimmel Live! They released their self-titled, debut album, “Run River North” in 2014 and in 2017, they embarked on a headlining tours with bands Cobi and Rooney. Run River North proved a crowd favorite at their 2017 Bentonville Film Festival appearance.