He wasn’t Mexican, but Herb Alpert cultivated the look and sound of Mexican music in a way that had huge appeal to audiences in North America and beyond.
It all started back in 1962, with a song called “The Lonely Bull.” It was a top 10 hit and launched the career of Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass. If you’re not a baby boomer, you may know their music thanks to references on The Simpsons. If you aren’t familiar with the Tijuana Brass sound, it’s worth a listen now.
Here are seven reasons to love Herb Alpert:
- He just turned 77 years of age. It’s his lucky year!
- Alpert gave us one of the sexiest album covers of all time. (See above.)
- His band, the Tijuana Brass, struck the perfect balance between kitsch and art, selling millions of records of instrumental music.
- His version of a great Burt Bacharach song, “This Guy’s in Love with You,” is the original.
- He reinvested in the music business with a label called A&M (Alpert & Moss) that signed a diverse roster of artists, including Cat Stevens, Supertramp, the Police, Bryan Adams and many more.
- Alpert has donated millions of dollars to music programs at two different California universities.
- Let’s celebrate him for lookin’ good as a young dude and for aging gracefully.
Lloyd Johnson, the man behind the look of pop music