The rally for immigration reform became a singalong Tuesday afternoon for thousands on the otherwise shutdown Mall. Los Tigres del Norte — the biggest, most beloved band that many English-speaking Americans have never heard of — were onstage, and almost everyone in the audience seemed to know every word.
Enraptured participation is typical fan behavior the world over, of course, but the explanation for the phenomenon at a Los Tigres show is a little special. Their lyrics are like news bulletins from the lives of immigrants. Some members of the San Jose-based band — whose name translates as “the Tigers of the North” — were once undocumented immigrants from Mexico.