Original Street Band WAR to Rock Los Angeles with “Low Rider,” “Why Can’t We Be Friends?” and More Hits.

Original street band WAR to rock Los Angeles with “Low Rider,” “Why Can't We Be Friends?” and more hits.
Original street band WAR to rock Los Angeles with “Low Rider,” “Why Can't We Be Friends?” and more hits.

[NoHo Arts District, CA] – More than five decades have gone by since the musical crossover band WAR began rocking.  This year marks the 50th Anniversary of their release of the best-selling album of 1973, “The World is a Ghetto” featuring the hit songs “Cisco Kid”  and “The World is a Ghetto.”

The band had yet to reach the pinnacle of its success, however, and followed up in 1975 with their third studio album “Why Can’t We Be Friends.” Featuring recognizable songs like “Don’t Let No One Get You Down,” “Low Rider,” and “Why Can’t We Be Friends,” the album was a hit,  and also put WAR in the spotlight for breaking down barriers through their music. 

“Why Can’t We Be Friends” called out race and class discrimination and it wasn’t the first time WAR married political messaging and music. Expressing their viewpoint had been part of the band’s identity since the late 1960s when they were originally known as The Creators.

“Our instruments and voices became our weapons of choice and the songs our ammunition. We spoke out against racism, hunger, gangs, crimes, and turf wars, as we embraced all people with hope and the spirit of brotherhood,” the band’s bio reads. “It’s just as (relevant) today.”  

Founding member Lonnie Jordan said, in the early days, it was difficult to put a name on the band’s eclectic and varied style of music, and even more difficult to explain it. 

“You didn’t have a lot of bands like us that played a variety of music,” he said in an interview with Pollstar. “First of all, you had that mix. Most of the groups were identified by genre. Not us. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to go to places like South Africa and other countries because of the [racial] blend in the group. Not just because of that, but also because of the name ‘WAR.’ That was a threat in some countries.” 

In 2021, WAR celebrated its 50th anniversary and took pride in the fact that founder and lead vocalist Jordan remains in the group. With a legacy that is still developing across all age groups, WAR now tours more than 150 days each year, performing for audiences of all sizes—from major venues to intimate clubs and county fairs.

On April 15, the band will perform at The Soraya, on the campus of CSU Northridge

The band’s celebration of peace, brotherhood, and 52 years of great music at The Soraya will also feature band members Scott Martin, Mitch Kashmar, Rene Camacho, Marcos J. Reyes, Sal Rodriguez, and James Zota Baker.

To learn more, or purchase tickets, click here.