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A Brief History on the Mariachi Tradition


Analyzing Mariachi Traditional and Popular Song Forms

The Jarabe  

  • Of the most traditional song forms from the mariachi genre.
  • “Jarabe” in spanish means “syrup” and probably refers to the “mixture” of meters within one jarabe.  Typically, a jarabe will go from a 6/8 to others sections with 3/4, 2/4, return to 6/8 and end in another meter.
  • Although today the jarabes are instrumental songs only, it is said that the jarabe is a medley of favorite regional sones and canciones of their era.  Many jarabes have a town or area in the name, i.e. “Jarabe Tapatío” (“Tapatío” is something or someone from the city of Guadalajara)that identifies which region it is from.
  • Traditionally performed with dancers.
  • The 6/8 rhythmic pattern is a constant pattern with no contratiempos as in the son jaliscience.


Back to Song Forms


The Son Jaliscience The Jarabe The Ranchera
The Serenata The Vals The Bolero
The Corrido The Polka The Chotis
The Clasica The Huapango The Cumbia


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