Sisters Morales sing for a cause 

Roberta and Lisa Morales enjoy hearing that they’ve been described as "the female Los Lobos."

"We’ll take it," they say during a recent phone interview, commenting on that observation as well as the fact they also have been compared to the Dixie Chicks.

"They’re both talented, both successful," says Lisa, a member of the San Antonio, Texas-based Sisters Morales. The group appears at Bimbo’s in San Francisco on Thursday in "A Tribute to Ritchie Valens" — which also will feature a special surprise guest — and at the Fox Theatre Saturday with Malo and La Ventana in the fourth annual Voices of Latin Rock benefit concert. Proceeds from ticket sales go toward increasing awareness about autism.

Lisa and Roberta travel every week, playing everywhere from Colorado to California, Canada to Europe.

The women, who grew up in Arizona and took classical piano lessons as youngsters — their grandmother Amelia Vasquez was a concert pianist who spent some time in San Francisco — have been a musical act since 1989. While they haven’t had a huge chart hit, they’re satisfied with the shape their careers have taken.

"It’s working. We’re blessed to have our next gig," says Lisa, adding, "Dwight Yoakam is looking for the next gig, too."

Having survived the seemingly requisite bad experience with a major record label deal, the sisters continue to thrive in the music business on their own terms.

"Our writing has gotten stronger, we’re persistent, we’ve changed, we’ve developed our style," says Roberta.

Dedicated to their mother, the group’s third and most recent album, released in 2002, is "Para Gloria." The 11-track set of sung in Spanish showcases their Mexican roots and traditions.

IF YOU GO

Voices of Latin Rock 4

When: 7 p.m. Thursday

Where: Bimbo’s 365 Club, 1025 Columbus Ave., S.F.

Tickets: $75

Contact: (415) 285-7719

When: 7 p.m. Saturday

Where: Fox Theatre, 2215 Broadway, Redwood City

Tickets: $25 to $32

Contact: (650) 369-4119 or www.foxdream.com

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Leslie Katz

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