STORY WRITTEN BY BRIAN BINGAMAN
@brianbingaman on Twitter
The Kimmel Center continues its new Philly ¡En Vivo! concert series with three-time Grammy-winners Los Lobos. Celebrating 40 years of being a band, Los Lobos is opting not to rock out with songs from “How Will the Wolf Survive” – which marks its 30th anniversary this year – but instead performing a super-acoustic show, or as long-time member Steve Berlin calls it, “folkloric.”
No amplifiers will be on stage, there won’t be a drummer, and the emphasis will be on the band’s 1988 all-Spanish, Tejano/mariachi album “La Pistola y El Corazon,” which won them one of their Grammys.
“It’s very different for us. People seem to respond positively to the music,” Berlin said of the “La Pistola” Tour shows, which you can see and hear for yourself at 8 p.m. Sunday Nov. 2 at the Merriam Theater, 250 S. Broad St., Philadelphia.
Berlin, a Philadelphia native now living in the Pacific Northwest, was playing saxophone in the Los Angeles rock group The Blasters when he first encountered Los Lobos playing at the Whiskey A Go Go. “I saw Los Lobos was playing, and I thought: ‘That’s a cool name’ (in English, it means the wolves), and they were amazing,” Berlin said. Sitting in with the band led to Berlin co-producing “How Will the Wolf Survive?”, which led to him becoming a full-time multi-instrumentalist with the band.
“Everyone (in the band) loves Philly,” Berlin said. “All my favorite restaurants are there.” The next leg of the “La Pistola” tour brings the band back to Pennsylvania to the Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs in Wilkes-Barre Nov. 22.
Tickets are $45 and $55, and can be purchased by calling (215) 893-1999 or at www.kimmelcenter.org.
“Go Eagles!,” Berlin said in closing, noting that he still follows the Philadelphia sports teams even though he moved away in 1975.