CC SA-BY Our OaklandRuben Llamas (born April 20,1937) is an author and historian, and was a resident in West Oakland/Old Oakland from when he was born until 1970. He is the author of Eye from the Edge: A Memoir of West Oakland, California.

Ruben was born in California in 1937, to Mexican immigrants Emilio Llamas and Sarah Garcia (Llamas). Emilio ran a barbershop, music store, and appliance store, La Ideal Music Store on 7th Street between Brush and Castro. The Llamas family lived in the upper floors of the building, and the shop was at the ground floor. Local musicians frequented the shop, both for the music and the occasional haircut.

One notable musician was Pedro Infante, who was a family friend. Pedro Infante was a big movie star and musician, and was like the "Frank Sinatra of Mexico" during the Golden Age of Mexican cinema. When Pedro Infante was in town he would hang out with Ruben's dad and get a haircut, and Ruben's mom would cook a big meal for him.

Ruben attended Tompkins Elementary for first grade, then St. Mary's School (part of St. Mary's Church), and played baseball and other sports at Jefferson Square Park.

Although Ruben and his wife now live near Sacramento, they still return to Oakland for history tours and book signings.

Ron Houseman, Monsignor Anthony Valdivia, and Ruben Llamas during an OHA walk
photo CC SA-BY Our Oakland
La Ideal Music store and Barber shop. Ruben Llamas father's business on 7th st. // Photo courtesey of Ruben LlamasPedro Infante gets a haircut by Emilio Llamas, Ruben's father, in La Ideal. // Photo courtesey of Ruben Llamas