Cruisers Pharaoh sleeve Another Lonely Night

The Cruisers

Cruisers Pharaoh sleeve Another Lonely Night
from left: F.G. Renaud, Bobby Ledesma, E.J. Ledesma (inside the car), Manny Carmona & Rafael Saldana.
Thank you to Gloria for providing the names in her comment below.

The Cruisers Pharaoh 45 Another Lonely Night

The Cruisers came from Harlingen, Texas in the Rio Grande Valley, like Noe Pro and Simon Reyes.

The Cruisers released at least eight singles on local south Texas labels. I didn’t know the lineup of the band until Gloria commented (see below) that the members on the sleeve above were:

The Cruisers Pharaoh 45 Please Let Me BeE.J. Ledesma – lead vocals & guitar
Rafael “Kai” Saldana – lead guitar
Manny Carmona – sax
Bobby Ledesma – bass
F.G. Renaud – drums

Other members may have included Arnold Cano on keyboards and Joe Rodriguez. More info on the band would be appreciated.

They had five 45s on the Pharaoh label from nearby McAllen, Texas, some of which are very pop oriented. The third 45 on Pharaoh, “My Place” fetched a lot of money when it sold recently, but I have no idea as to its quality.

E.J. Ledesma, who has had a long career in Tejano music wrote many of their songs including “My Place”, “Another Lonely Night”, “Please Let Me Be (The One for You)” and “Oh! Sweetness”. If anyone has scans or mp3s of the other Pharaoh records, please let me know.

The Cruisers Pharaoh 45 Baby DollThe Cruisers had two releases on the ARV International label, also from McAllen, “Just Having Fun” and “Movin’ Man” were written, arranged and produced by Bobby Ledesma. The b-sides to each are lighter, with “Lucky Man” featuring horns.

List of 45 releases:

Pharaoh 125 – An Angel Like You / The Lonely (1964)
Pharaoh 128 – Another Lonely Night / Please Let Me Be (The One For You)
Pharaoh 139 – My Place / Walkin’ and a Ridin’ (1965)
Pharaoh 148 – The Fire’s Gone / Oh! Sweetness (Aug. 1966)
Pharaoh 155 – Celina / Baby Doll (February 1967)
ARV 5004 – Just Having Fun / Lucky Man (May 1967)
ARV 5010 – Movin’ Man / Children Playing In The Sun
Impacto IM-178 – Down By the River / I Can’t Believe It (1968)

For more on the Pharaoh label see the article on this site.

Thank you to Fred Hoyt for the scans of “Another Lonely Night” / “Please Let Me Be” and the sleeve, to Westex and Max Waller for additions to the discography, and to Danny and Gloria for the info on the band in their comments, below.

The Cruisers ARV International 45 Just Having FunThe Cruisers ARV International 45 Movin' Man

13 thoughts on “The Cruisers”

  1. The Cruisers were pretty much a South Texas Chicano group that played the sounds of the day. The two Pharaoh 45s I have are lite-weight pop, with horns even. Probably of interest ONLY to those wanting to run the label. In addition to the ones you have listed above they also had a two more Pharaoh releases…
    An Angel Like You / ???? (Pharaoh 125)
    Celina / Baby Doll (Pharaoh 155)

    They also had at least one release on Carlos Guzman’s Impacto label out of McAllen (Can’t Believe It / Down By the River, 178). Ain’t heard it. Guzman himself cut a nice tejano version of “96 Tears” and a funky workup of Ray Charles’ “The Train” for the Bego label.

    (Disco. info above from Ruben Molina’s “Chicano Soul” book).

  2. hola, are u from the valle?i have the cruisers “the fire is gone”do you have the record “another lonely night”i was like 4 years old but my brothers and sisters loved the cruisers music.any info on the inn keeper band.they have a rio grande valley.texas hit w/ ” i could never hurt you girl”
    gracias and have a fabulous day
    yahnna

  3. The Cruisers were from Harlingen Texas, My wife’s uncle played with them, I played in a band and we would play intermission for the Crusiers, They are still around and still do gigs. On the two songs you have there just havng fun I believe the lead guitar was Joe Rodriguez, I recognize his style, the second song the keyboard was Arnold Cano. Thanks for making my day!!!!

  4. On the record cover. F.G. Renaud, on bass Bobby Ledesma, on lead vocals & guitar (inside the car) E.J. Ledesma, on sax Manny Carmona & on lead guitar Ki Salazar. I knew E.J. F.G. pretty well back then. Met Ki a few years later. I have digital copies of several of their songs. A little over used (u know, the scratchy sounds but still decent copies). I have Another Lonely night, an angel like u, the lonely one. A few more.

  5. Yeh I misspelled Kai’s first name. His name is actually Rafael but known as Kai & his last name is actually Saldana. I just gave him his niece’s last name. One of those association things. But I met him THROUGH his nieces which is why I accidentally called him Salazar instead of Saldana. The other info is correct. Sorry about that. Just a brain fart

  6. I was married to the Sax player for 40 years till 2007 When he decided to go play with all the great musicians that left this world. Thank you for all the memories. We met right after they posed for that sleeve cover picture. I know he left his collection just need to find it.

  7. We lived around Jefferson elementary school on J. St. went to high school with Bobby lesma and Penny Saldana brother of Kai I NOW LIVE IN
    MISSION, BUT I DO MISS THOSE DAYS IN HARLINGEN WITH THE CRUISERS ROCK N ROLL I LIVED ON J AND WEST HANSON

  8. My name is Ralph Escobedo and currently front the band ‘Ralph & The Cruisers’ . The original members of the band were E.J. LEDESMA on rhythm guitar, RAFAEL ( KAI )SALDANA on lead guitar, myself on drums and ADAM ( BB ) NAJAR on bass (Killed In Action , Vietnam 1968 ) KAI and myself are Vietnam veterans and he was awarded the Purple Heart for wounds received while in Vietnam. Both EJ and I served in the U.S. Navy ..and while I was home on leave in January of 1965 , we ( EJ, KAI, BOBBY LEDESMA, MANNY CARMONA, FRANK RENUAD & ARNOLD CANO went to record our first record which was AN ANGEL LIKE YOU and on the flip side, THE LONELY ! KAI and I do the background voices on AN ANGEL LIKE YOU and I am the lone voice on THE LONLY. In the last 3 years , I have recorded 3 CDs of oldies cover songs and currently performing at various RV Parks here in the valley. EJ has retired and still writing material for different Tejano bands and KAI has retired as well. If anyone has any questions please feel free to contact me @ rescobedo@rgv.rr.com.

  9. This is the best news on the Cruisers I have heard from a band from the 60 ‘s .I was about 15 years old when I first heard them in Harlingen,thank you !

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