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When you think of mariachi musicians, you’re probably picturing the sombreros, the Mexican cowboy or charro outfit and the mustachioed Mexican men serenading in them. And even though women can perform in mariachi bands and there are all-female mariachi groups, mariachi music and culture is very male-dominated. We found a mariachi group in Los Angeles that’s trying to change that. Mariachi Arcoiris de Los Ángeles (Rainbow Mariachi of Los Angeles in English) was created in 2014 as a “safe space” for LGBTQ musicians and fans by their director, Carlos Samaniego. They’re the first openly LGBTQ mariachi in Los Angeles, and probably, the world.

Featured image courtesy of Mariachi Arcoiris de Los Ángeles