Los Lonely Boys' rise to fame was years in the making in their case, all their lives.
Dad Enrique Garza Sr. got the ball rolling for the sons who comprise Los Lonely Boys guitarist Henry, bassist Jojo and drummer Ringo (yep, that's his real name). Enrique played in a band with his brothers until one brother's death, resulting in the bands breakup; he then enlisted his sons as backup musicians and moved his family from west Texas to Nashville, Tenn.
The musical brothers came to blend roots-rock, country, Latino and blues led by Henry's searing guitar licks. Propelled by their No. 1 hit single, "Heaven," their self-titled 2004 debut album went into the stratosphere, earning the group its first Grammy. Multi-platinum sales, heavy touring and a second album, "Sacred," which debuted at No. 2 on the charts, have made life good these days.
"In providing entertainment we saw the feeling it could bring to people," recalls Henry Garza, 29. "Our father dreamed of being the first Mexican-American country singer ... he loved Willie, Waylon the whole outlaw movement and considered himself the missing outlaw."
For years the Garzas shuttled between Nashville and Texas. "In Nashville something inside said go home even though people were telling us we had to be where the business was," Garza says. "When I was 18, I had a son who passed away from SIDS, which was a life-changing experience not just for me but for my whole family. I wanted him buried in Texas, so we went home. My biggest blessing is my family, who was there for me. ... It was rough."
By then the brothers were pursuing music without their dad and decided to try again in Nashville. When it once again "didn't feel right," he says, they returned to Texas, where industry buzz says Willie Nelson "discovered" Los Lonely Boys true?
"In a sense," Garza acknowledges. "One night Willie came to see us play and we were freaking out when we saw him. Willie paid attention, and because he paid attention, a lot of people paid attention."
Their debut album was recorded at Nelson's Pedernales Studio in Austin, Texas, and since then the band has come full circle: Dad Enrique realized his own dreams when he joined his sons and Nelson on a cut on the "Sacred" album called "Outlaws."
The brothers all live in their hometown of San Angelo, Texas, where they opened the Texican Chop Shop in 2005, an auto-body shop run by Ringo's father-in-law. All the brothers love fishing. "We'd love to be professional bass fisherman," Henry Garza says, laughing. "We have our poles with us, for any time we see water!"
Married with four children, Garza also talks a lot about family and God.
"I can remember dreams I had when I was 5 or 6 years old. I saw a sea of people and us onstage, and I would wake up and feel so good," he says. "[Our success] was almost like a premonition fulfilled although dreams don't show you all the blood, sweat and tears.
"We're not afraid to say what we believe in," he says. "We are true believers in God and Jesus. We believe God orchestrated our success. We're here to make music, have fun and soothe the soul." S
Los Lonely Boys and Pat Green play Innsbrook After Hours July 18. Gates open at 6 p.m. Tickets are $10-$30. Call 794-6700 or visit www.innsbrookafterhours.com.