The Los Lobos Cookbook: Please Feed the Wolves

Los Lobos plays Mission Plaza in San Luis Obispo

Los Lobos plays Mission Plaza in San Luis Obispo, May 2016


Conrad Lozano (photo: Jon Luini)

“Do any of you like to cook?” we asked the three members of my favorite band Los Lobos who were signing autographs for the fans who waited in line after an afternoon show in Nipomo. “I do,” said Conrad Lozano, the bass player with his great smile. In fact, preparing and enjoying good food appears to be a passion for all these musicians perhaps second only to making music that gets us all dancing: “Everybody Cumbia!”

When he’s close to home, Conrad enjoys making breakfast for his grandkids. David Hidalgo makes grilled cheese sandwiches on the road with a clothes iron (!). Cesar Rosas not only makes breakfast for his young daughters, but after he moved out of of his mother’s place as a young man, he had to keep calling her to get advice and guidance for making his favorite foods now that he was out on his own with his own kitchen. He gets nostalgic when you tell him you make your own tortillas. We’re charmed by the consistently great music—40 years and counting—as well as the commitment of these dedicated musicians to making and enjoying great food with friends, family, and fans.


Cesar Rosas (photo: Jon Luini)


David Hidalgo (photo: Jon Luini)

Between their first and second performances at Moe’s Alley in Santa Cruz back in 2013, some members of the band answered questions posed by their internet audience. Steve Berlin addressed the fan question of whether there would ever be a book about the band’s experiences on the road. “No: the secrets will die with us; a cookbook might happen, but that’s about it.” Another fan asked if Louie Perez and David Hidalgo still write songs together after sharing family-style meals. “Not really,” says Louie: “We’re too busy eating,” he says while laughing.

Take it from a true foodie fan: we would love to cook a recipe from The Los Lobos Cookbook while kitchen dancing to our favorite album, Colossal Head. When I moved to California before getting really into food, I was captivated by music and the chance to see my favorite band live. Once here, I checked their schedule and could hardly believe I could see them for the $7 entry fee to the MidState Fair because they played two full sets at the free stage: it was a perfect welcome to California for a dancing fanatic like me.


David Hidalgo on the guitar (photo: Jon Luini)


Louie Perez (photo: Jon Luini)

Their affection for great food, sharing a delicious meal, retaining family traditions, and feeding others with flavor and sound confirms why these guys are my favorites. In the mist of our country’s celebratory and tumultuous times, their music always applies. Some of our favorite tunes…

  • Peace
  • Do the Murray
  • Oh Yeah
  • That Train Don’t Stop Here Anymore
  • I Wanna Be Like You
  • Is This All There Is?
  • Mas Y Mas
  • Chuco’s Cumbia
  • La Feria de la Flores
  • Revolution
  • Yo Canto

Major thanks to Good Medicine Presents for bringing these musicians to the Central Coast. ¡Mucho gras!

Steve Berlin

Steve Berlin (photo: Jon Luini)

 Jon Luini photos, reproduced with permission

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