The Best Mariachi Bands of All Time

Over 1.1K Ranker voters have come together to rank this list of The Best Mariachi Bands of All Time

Known for their snazzy charro uniforms and seemingly endless number of bandmembers, the best Mariachi bands are some of the most well known musicians in Mexico. Once you look past their outfits, Mariachi artists are actually Mexican folk musicians. Originally called Mariachi bands due to their presence at weddings, the best Mariachi music groups actually don't have a single traditional lead singer. Instead, they rely the expertise of their fellow musicians. When you think of traditional Mexican music, generally, Mariachi bands are the first to come to mind. All of this being said, there are numerous talented Mariachi vocalists without a massive ensemble, such as Luis Miguel, Pedro Infante, and Yolanda del Río, who've all taken the classic genre to new heights. 

So, what are the best Mariachi bands? When thinking about Mariachi, perhaps some of the first names that come to mind are Vicente Fernandez, Jose Alfredo Jimenez, Rocio Durcal and Pepe Aguilar. These are some of the biggest names in Mariachi, and in the case of Fernandez, it has translated into international success and sold out arenas. The best Mariachi bands are able to get people to dance along to their music, in one of the many dances associated with the genre.

That said, it's up to you to determine what the best Mariachi bands are. This list answers the questions "who are the best mariachi bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest mariachi musician ever?" If you know enough about the genre, please vote based on the quality of the band's music instead of just voting for the most popular mariachi artists whom you simply might've heard of.

Most divisive: Estela Nunez
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  • Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán

    Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán

    165 votes

    Undoubtedly, Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán has left an indelible mark on the world of mariachi music. Established in 1897 and known as the "greatest mariachi in the world," this group has been a vital force in shaping the genre's sound through powerful performances and innovative arrangements. Their exceptional musical skill and passion have helped them collaborate with numerous renowned artists such as Alejandro Fernández and Pedro Infante, further contributing to the group's legendary status in Mexico and around the globe.

  • Pedro Infante
    234 votes

    A symbol of Mexican Golden Age cinema and a true national icon, Pedro Infante's heartwarming voice and acting prowess went hand-in-hand with the romanticism of mariachi music. Throughout his storied career, he became one of the most beloved singers and actors of his time, with unforgettable performances in films like Nosotros Los Pobres and Pepe El Toro. The timeless charm and emotion that Infante brought to the mariachi genre solidified his place among the all-time greats.

  • Revered as one of the most essential composers in Mexican music history, José Alfredo Jiménez's legacy of poetic and poignant lyrics has resonated with countless generations of listeners. His extraordinary songwriting ability, coupled with his emotive voice, provided a deeper introspective aspect to the mariachi genre. Through classics such as "El Rey" and "Si Nos Dejan," Jiménez proved that beneath the upbeat melodies and vibrant instrumentation, mariachi could genuinely touch the soul.

  • Regarded as the "king of ranchera music," Vicente Fernández's commanding presence and powerful voice have captivated audiences for well over five decades. With an extensive repertoire including more than 100 albums, his interpretations of traditional mariachi songs showcase his impressive vocal range and innate ability to convey profound emotions. Fernández's unwavering commitment to preserving the rich essence of Mexican culture has secured his status as a pillar in the mariachi music pantheon.

  • Javier Solís
    168 votes

    Naturally gifted with a smooth, velvety voice, Javier Solís brought a touch of sophistication to the world of mariachi and ranchera music. His tragically short career still managed to leave a lasting impact on the genre, as his stirring renditions of songs like "Sabor a Mí" and "Payaso" showcased an unparalleled level of artistry. The emotional depth Solís embodied through his heartfelt performances solidifies his place among the greats of mariachi music.

  • Juan Gabriel
    174 votes

    The unmatched talent and charisma of Juan Gabriel have made him one of the most celebrated artists in Latin music history. His remarkable fusion of mariachi, pop, and ballads helped him reach millions of listeners worldwide. With an extensive list of chart-topping hits and a unique ability to pour his soul into each performance, "El Divo de Juárez" left an everlasting mark on the mariachi music landscape.