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Although the roots of the Mariachi go back hundreds of years, there are no Bachs or Beethovens in its early history because Mariachi music was the music of country people.Until the 1930's Mariachi groups were local and semi-professional.If true, this may be the source of traditional dress for mariachi bands.
Musicologists and folklorists have argued for years over the origin of mariachi.
Standard Spanish dictionaries and encyclopedias name the French word mariage (meaning wedding or marriage) as a possible origin, and date it back to the 1860s, when Maximillian of Habsburg was Emperor of Mexico.
The typical Spanish theatrical orchestra of the sixteenth, seventeenth, and eighteenth centuries was comprised of violins (usually two), harp and guitars (or guitar variants).
It was from this group that several of the most distinctive regional ensembles of Mexico developed, including the Mariachi.
Aided by the advent of radio, television, and the movies, mariachi music went on to become a definitive part of Mexican culture, and the Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán appeared in over 200 films in the 1940s and 1950s, often considered the Golden Age of Mexican cinema.
Prior to the 1930s, photographs show early mariachis dressed in calzones de manta, and huaraches, homespun white cotton pants and shirts and leather sandals, the clothes worn by most peasants in Jalisco.
Mariachi music as we know it today results from the confluence of several different influences: European styled concert ensembles on haciendas composed of violins, harp, guitars, jawharps and other instruments, simpler coastal folk ensembles whose African influence gives mariachi some of its key rhythmic elements, and the harp and violin ensembles of the tierra caliente.
It originated in the Mexican state of Jalisco, in the town of Cocula, in the 19th century, the first example cited in print dates from 1880.
The album went on to multi-platinum status, becoming at the time the biggest selling non-English language disc in United States history.
It also spawned a successful videocassette of Linda's elaborate stage show which was later released on DVD.
Ronstadt went on to record a sequel titled "Mas Canciones."The traditional dance technique associated with both the son jalisciense and son jarocho is the zapateado, a distinctive type of footwork that originated in Spain.