While fairly unknown to most of the county, Los Lonely Boys are making waves with their “Texican Rock” sound. Their self-titled debut album, a joint venture from Or Music and Sony/Epic, has brought a new national audience for the band of three brothers originally from Snyder, Tex. The first single off the album, “Heaven,” is receiving heavy airplay on radio stations across the county as well as heavy airplay of their video on VH1.
Guitarist Henry Garza says their first single “Heaven” is simply based on a prayer. “’Heaven’” is a prayer, man,” Henry told VH1. “It’s an actual prayer that I made. Just like everybody, we have hard times and you look for a way out. Our way’s praying and music, too. I went into the room and I got into a corner. I closed the door. I got down on my knees. There was a pen and paper there. I started praying, crying and feeling pretty low. When I was praying, something said to write this down.”
The video for the uplifting song was shot in a mission in their new hometown of San Angelo, Tex. The band described shooting the video where a number of their friends and family members attend church a very spiritual experience. Since the release of their debut album and “Heaven,” the Garza brothers have earned spots on Jimmy Kimmel Live and On-Air with Ryan Seacrest. The band will also perform as part of Willie Nelson’s 4
of July Picnic in the Ft. Worth Stockyards this year.
The Los Lonely Boys became Nelson’s favorite band after he heard them play live at Momo’s in Austin. Since then Nelson gladly lent his guitar playing on the “La Contestacion” track and invited the band to join him in his Pedernales studio. While the rest of the country is just getting to know the band, the Garza brothers have been involved in the music business since their childhood. They got their first taste of the music business with their dad Henry “Ringo” Garza as his back-up band, playing small cantinas and bars across the southwest. “We were playing in every local bar, just to pay the rent, to get the food, to live,” drummer Ringo Garza told VH1. “That’s the way we live. We were given the gift of music at a real young age and that’s what we used to live on, since we were little guys. We weren’t going around stealing or doing stuff like that, y’know?”
After hearing a tape of Texas guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughn, the brothers decided they didn’t want to play their fathers Tejano music anymore, but wanted instead to head out on their own accord. So the trio, Henry on guitar, Jojo on bass and Ringo on drums set out to prove their own musical worth. Their debut album borrows heavy influence from Stevie Ray Vaughn and early rockers Freddie King and Johnny Winter. The album also has a heavy influence from their Latino roots and guitarist Carlos Santana. In describing their style, Henry says he describes it best with the burrito theory. “People always ask us what kind of style we play. I tell ’em it’s a cross between Stevie Ray meets Santana; Jimi Hendrix meets Richie Valens, or the Beatles meet Ronnie Milsap,” Henry said. “I call it my music burrito theory. What we’ve done is made like our own tortilla, right, with all the knowledge of all the greats that are out there, I can’t even think of ’em all right now, but we put ’em inside the tortilla, fold it up in there, we make our own burrito and we’re sellin’ it to the world, y’know?”
From the love ballad, “More than Love” to the Texas blues sound and tight vocal harmonies of “Crazy Dream” there’s a joy that comes from their music and lyrics. And while their album is not heavy with blatant spiritual lyrics, there’s always something great about sharing the ups and downs of life within the lyrics of a great band, who find joy in something greater then themselves. “That’s what it’s about. It isn’t about who we are,” Henry said. “It’s about the bigger source. It’s about our belief in God. We can’t even explain how we know or do what we do. That ‘Heaven’ is the song coming out, that’s like a rock ‘n’ roll prayer being answered. That’s cool.”
You can catch the band this summer at a number of venues including Stubbs BBQ in Austin, Tex. July 8 and 9; The River Stage in San Angelo, Tex. July 10; River Splash in St. Louis, Mo. on Aug. 5 and the Red Rock Amphitheater in Morrison, Colo. Aug. 7. If catching a band at home is more your style the band plans to release a live DVD later this summer and a new album sometime next year. Catch them perform on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno July 8.