Fifty years ago on a stormy night, brothers Heraclio, Jesús “Chuy,” Francisco and José Guadalupe García were recording their first album when they came up with an idea for the band’s name inspired by the weather outside. They officially became known as Los Huracanes del Norte — kicking off their careers in 1972, and since becoming a leading force in norteña music, with anthems such as “Nomás Por tu Culpa,” “Pa Que Te Casabas Juan” and “Mi Complemento.”
Born and raised between the Mexican states of Jalisco and Michoacán, the brothers emigrated to California as teens with their parents where they worked the fields by day and performed at local venues by night. Now, with more than 20 top 10 albums on Billboard‘s Regional Mexican Albums chart, including two No. 1s (Norteño 2000 and En Que Trabaja El Muchacho), Los Huracanes del Norte continues to build on a legacy that has paved the way for many norteño acts in the past five decades.
To immortalize the impact they’ve had in Mexican music and beyond, today (Sept. 7), the members of the supergroup unveiled their very own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Father and son, Heraclio and Roberto García, went up to the podium to accept on behalf of the group and give a heartfelt speech.
“To be honest, I don’t even know where to start,” said Heraclio, who stood out from the rest of his bandmates wearing a traditional suit (the rest wore black vaquero outfits, cowboy boots and tejanas, in the middle of an L.A. heatwave). “Today, a dream comes true. We’ve always strived to do meaningful things in life but this recognition is special as it will last forever. Our kids, grandkids will be be able to come here and say, ‘Look, there’s my dad or grandpa’s star.’ Thank you all for being here, this is a day we’ll never forget.”
His son, who’s now also part of the group, then took the microphone to do a very relatable thing for all children of immigrants: “I’m just here to translate what my dad said,” he began. And went on to just that. Then, they all gathered around their brand new and shiny star, which became the 2,732nd star on the Walk of Fame. The founding members’ sister (and label manager), María, then joined them giving each one a hug and congratulated them.
Since the very beginning, Los Huracanes del Norte have kept it all in the family bringing on new members, sons of the founding members, to round up the current band and breathe in new air to connect with the new generation of fans. The current members are: Heraclio García, Francisco García, José Guadalupe García, José De Jesús García, Antonio García, José Luis Mejia, Jaime García, and Roberto Heraclio García.
Heraclio and Chuy García spoke to Billboard over email, reflecting on Los Huracanes del Norte’s five decades.
What does having your very own star in the Hollywood Walk of Fame mean at this point in your career?
It’s one step forward in our musical career. It’s an honor to know that we’re now immortalized in the recording industry, not only as musicians but as artists of our genre. These 50 years have allowed us to expose our music, our roots and our culture. Our dream was to play onstage and to be able to provide for our families. Now, our generations will be proud of our work, and we owe that to our fans.
How would you describe the last 50 years together?
There are too many experiences that we’ve lived, but we feel like we’re just starting, because our audience continues to follow our music. The last 50 years have given us so much, so many roads, many cities, and all the people that have allowed Huracanes to keep singing.
Not many groups get to celebrate five decades together — what’s been key to staying together, relevant and successful?
It’s knowing how to co-exist, to be human and to be family. We respect each other. It’s not easy to continue moving forward when there are so many diverse personalities but we’ve always been very united — that unity gives you time and maturity. Here we don’t allow egos to take over, we’re a generation that was dedicated to work and create music our own way. It’s brotherhood and camaraderie that allows us to exist.
Besides your newly unveiled star, is there an achievement that fills with you great pride today?
Our biggest accomplishment is our work, but it’s our families that have given us what we feel most proud of, our kids and our grandkids. It’s a type of pride that you can’t top.
Regional Mexican music is in one of its best moments, what is your takeaway from the genre’s recent renaissance?
Our genre has always been present. It’s a genre of our people and our country, which is our home, where we grew up and where we go back to. It will always be part of our culture and it’s a genre that’s very noble and humble like our people who work in the fields, our city and our hard-working people.
What advice would you give the new generation of Mexican music acts? Maybe a piece of advice that you would’ve wanted someone to give you at the beginning of your careers.
Our advice is to just work, and to believe that you have to be persistent in order for this work. You have to keep knocking doors. This doesn’t happen overnight, there’s a path you have to walk but there will be a reward. And you have to be ready for both: success and failure. So make sure you surround yourself with people who respect your work and that believe in you.
As leaders in norteña music, what legacy do you hope to leave as Los Huracanes del Norte?
We continue to build our legacy since we feel like there’s so much more to do. There’s always space to grow. We want our music to be part of the musical bible, so that our music tells our story.