Retro Spins: La Bamba
I got introduced to Lou Diamond Phillips in his role as Chavez in the two Young Guns films - A guilty pleasure of mine to watch back to back every year. I always felt like he wasn't really utilized to his fullest potential in films, but have to say his portrayal of Ritchie Valens was superb.
Okay, so this may be cheating. It's not exactly chalk full of 80's material. However, unlike Dirty Dancing, which I dinged for this, these versions are at least re-recordings in the 80's.
Los Lobos does a fantastic job bringing the music of Ritchie Valens to a new audience, while also providing them with the break out they needed in the USA. Unfortunately, this album would eclipse their own 1987 entry, By the Light of the Moon - An album I'll be reviewing in 2021 as a Retro Spin.
It was easy for me to get into this album because I'm a fan of jukebox style 50's hits, and there are plenty offered here. Los Lobos contributes eight of the twelve tracks. However, I have to admit, beyond Brian Setzer, I didn't recognize any of the other contributors by name. Still, their songs didn't offend.
While you can't go wrong with La Bamba, the song, the stand out track for me actually wasn't a Los Lobos track. Instead it was Crying, Waiting, Hoping by Marshall Crenshaw (originally Buddy Holly). I enjoyed it so much that I actually played it again when I finished listening to the entire soundtrack.
Overall, it was a nice change of pace from the typical sounds of the 80's, and also nice to finally dig out a good album after the recent flops I had been subjecting myself to.
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