This year marks a decade since Los Lonely Boys burst out of the bars of Austin and onto stages around the world on the strength of a desperate “prayer to God” set to an infectious groove, a song called “Heaven,” which became a Grammy-winning international hit for the three brothers from San Angelo, Texas.
At SXSW 2004, the boys cleaned up at the Austin Music Awards (Band of the Year, Song of the Year, Album of the Year, etc.) and followed that up with a free show on Auditorium Shores before one of the biggest and most enthusiastic crowds in SXSW history, captured on the DVD Texican Style.
Brothers Henry, JoJo and Ringo are back for SXSW 2014 with their 5th studio album, Revelation, just released last week on Lonely Tone/Playing in Traffic Records. The sound is classic Los Lonely Boys: a mix of hard-driving Texican rock ‘n’ roll mixed with sweet ballads, tight 3-part harmonies and soaring guitar solos.
Revelation is Los Lonely Boys’ first recording work since guitarist Henry sustained serious injuries in a fall from the stage during a February 2013 performance in Los Angeles, necessitating a lengthy and ongoing recovery period.
“We nearly lost Henry, man, and that was a big change for us,” Jojo acknowledges. “The whole experience was a wake-up call for us. It made us rethink every aspect of our lives and our careers, and it reminded us of what’s really important to us.”
“We’re very thankful that God blessed our family with a drummer, a guitar player and a bass player, and that the three of us get to make music together,” Jojo concludes. “There’s been a few bumps in the road here and there, but that happens in any family and in any band. The main thing is that we stick together, and that we’re trying to pass on that feeling of brotherhood, of familia, in the music that we make.”
Los Lonely Boys stopped off in Hawaii this week on their way to dates in Japan and then back to the U.S. for a West Coast run. They’ll back back in Austin for SXSW 2014 and you can hear selections from the new album throughout the day on SXSWfm.
Los Lonely Boys photo by Gabriella McSwain/Way of Light Photography