The iconic Norteño band Los Tigres del Norte will offer a free concert on the Washington Mall to demonstrate the group's solidarity with the more than 11 million undocumented foreigners in the United States.
"We're going to have the chance to send that message all together and we, Los Tigres del Norte, will sing the songs and experiences of our people. We will transmit the need of the undocumented immigrants to have legal status in this country," lead singer Jorge Hernandez told Efe in a telephone interview.
"We're going to raise our voices peacefully, and I hope that they listen to us and give us the strength ... for immigration reform to be achieved," he said.
The U.S. Senate in June approved an immigration reform package, but the measure is facing an uncertain future in the House of Representatives.
For Los Tigres, the difficulties of immigrants have been part of their repertoire since the 1970s and "when opportunities like this come up, the most important thing for us is to unite and be a strong voice," Hernandez said.
The quintet will offer its first concert dedicated mostly to the immigration issue on the Mall performing songs such as "Vivan los mojados" (Long Live the Wetbacks), which is considered to be an anthem of undocumented migrants in the United States.
"We suffer in our own flesh what it is to be in the shadows, what it is to hide, to suffer the absence of your family, hoping to get money to send to those who remained back there" in Mexico, Hernandez said, describing the "adventure" of heading north into an unknown culture.
That empathy, in part, explains the success of the band, which over its almost 40-year career has sold more than 32 million albums.