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To celebrate the launch of our Mariachi Collection, I wanted to give you a little bit of history about the famous Mariachi.
What is a Mariachi Band?
A Mariachi Band is a Mexican musical group that wear charro suits and play rancheras, boleros, ballads, huapangos, jarabes among others.
This type of Mexican folk music originated in the early 1800s in western Mexico, principally in Jalisco, Michoacán, Nayarit, Colima, and Aguascalientes.
Initially, a typical Mariachi band consisted of four musicians. The instrumentation varied within each group and region. In central Jalisco, where the mariachi presence was the most prominent, they use two violins, a vihuela (a small guitar with a rounded back and five strings), and a guitarron ( a large, six-string bass). Southern Jalisco and Michoacán preferred using two violins, a harp, and a guitarra de golpe ( a guitar with five nylon strings in five courses).
After the Mexican Revolution, Mariachi groups grew in size, and instruments like the harp and the guitarra de golpe became disused. By 1930 the trumpets were introduced, and twenty years later, the two-trumpet combination became famous thanks to Mariachi Mexico de Pepe Villa.
About the Charro Suit
After the Revolution of 1910, the Mariachi began wearing more modest attire since they could now afford it; they chose to wear charro suits, specifically the Gala suit.
There are five types of charro suits, the faena, the half gala, gala suit, and the grand gala suit.
The Faena suit or "work suit" is made up of a palm, wheat, or felt hat without ornaments, typically the shirt has no collar, and on top, they wear a suede jacket with matching trousers. They wear leather or suede ankle boots and a butterfly-style bowtie, accompanied by a pair of chaps, a belt, pistol holster, and silver spurs.
The Half Gala suit comprises a felt hat, a turned-neck shirt, a bow tie with a suede or cashmere jacket; the trousers have side ornaments, a belt, and a gun holster.
The Gala Suit is either gray dark blue, or black. The trousers have silver ornaments on the sides from the waist to the ankles, and the short coat called chaquetilla has silver ornaments from shoulders to the wrist.
For accessories, they carry an embroidered gun holster and a matching belt. The shirt has a turn-down collar—lastly, the bowtie has delicate embroidery matching the silver buttons and the hat.
Here are a few songs played by one of the most famous Mariachi bands in Mexico. Enjoy!
Mariachi is a big part of Mexican culture; that is why we created the Mariachi Collection. Click here to check it out!