Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Music (MM)



First Advisor

Dr. Andrés R. Amado Pineda

Second Advisor

Dr. Susan Hurley-Glowa

Third Advisor

Dr. Dahlia Guerra


In mariachi scholarship to date, armonía practices are often overlooked. The armonía instruments provide essential rhythmic and harmonic support, yet their specific practices are assumed to be invariable. Close analysis suggests a more complex story. This work provides an analysis of the armonía within the son jalisciense song form in particular, by comparing several performances of the popular son jalisciense song “El Cuervo ” (The Crow). Analysis reveals that the armonía underwent a homogenization process before arriving at present-day practices, and I argue that the 1965 Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán recording is the point of homogenization on which future practice is based. Earlier recordings reflect an older, less familiar and considerably more varied style armonía in son jalisciense practice. In sum, this works explores a neglected aspect of mariachi performance, studying the armonía’s variation over time, laying the groundwork for more detailed future studies on this topic.


Copyright 2016 Adolfo Estrada Jr. All Rights Reserved.ía-practice/docview/1850205061/se-2?accountid=7119