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100+ near you

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10. Smithson Music
4.9
from 151 reviews
4.9
(151)
4.9 (151)
In High Demand
  • 32 years in business
  • 217 hires on Thumbtack
"I have used Alvin Smithson's services for over five years as a piano tuner, teacher and performer. I am always impressed with his skills, artistry and professionalism. Alvin first came to tune my 100-years old Steinway after it had been neglected for a number of years. He first examined the instrument, diagnosed what needed to be done and then proceeded with his expert tuning. Immediately after he was done and started playing, I was amazed at how good the piano sounded. Alvin explained that with a piano that hasn't been tuned or played in so many years, it will take some time to achieve its best form and sound for which it was built. A short time after, my wife started taking piano lessons from Alvin and as she started gaining proficiency in playing under his guidance, the piano itself gained a rich pleasing sound. Alvin paid close attention and adjusted notes or did a full tuning whenever needed. He also took the time to clean the strings and do minor technical adjustments. When a string needed to be replaced, Alvin recommended a technician from a highly reputable company. Overall, we owe it to his expertise to have the wonderful old piano do what it was built for by the Steinway masters. I should also mention that I heard some great musicians at venues where Alvin is the regular piano tuner. People who visit our house and hear our piano, or play it themselves, always compliment its sound. But the best comes when Alvin himself sits at the keyboard, whether at our house, at a social function or performing in the theater, it's such a joy to hear him play some great classical pieces as well as his own wonderful compositions. He is truly a very talented, sensitive and highly knowledgeable artist. And such a pleasant person, too. My wife and I feel fortunate to have Alvin give us the best piano sound to enjoy live music in our home. I would recommend him to anyone as piano tuner, teacher and overall musician."
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Q & A

Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

What is a mariachi band?

Mariachi bands are rooted in Mexican culture. Traditional mariachi bands consisted of two or more members playing stringed instruments, wearing regional costumes adapted from the charro (Mexican horseman or cowboy). Modern mariachi bands, which are likely what you’re looking for when searching for a mariachi band for hire, feature at least four members who play stringed instruments (violin, vihuela, bass guitar called guitarron) and one or more trumpets. The costumes have remained the same, but now trumpets are synonymous with mariachi music. Mariachi bands for hire often play a wide range of music, including styles originating from Mexico and adopted from elsewhere. These include jarabes, waltzes, serenades, corridos (Mexican ballads), ranchera, cumbia, and more. Mariachi bands for hire bring a festive and soulful element to a party, birthday, wedding, corporate affair, fundraiser or community event. UNESCO has inscribed mariachi music on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

How much does a mariachi band cost?

A mariachi band will bring your party or event alive with their fabulous costumes, beautiful playing and strong vocals. The cost of a mariachi band for hire will depend on how many players are in the group. Each musician in a performance group needs to be paid, so pricing is usually based on the number of mariachis (musicians), the location of the event (and travel time required), and the length of the performance. Day of the week also affects cost, as does day — Christmas, New Year’s Eve and other major holidays will cost more than regular days. The national average cost for live bands of all types ranges between $740 and $1,200. Depending on where you live and regional rates for performers, you might expect to pay between $65 and $120 per hour, per player. Mariachi groups may have 12-15 players available for performance at one time, depending on your budget. Here are some examples of how the number of players affects average cost:

  • Four mariachis: $300 per hour for weeknights, $400 per hour for weekends.
  • Five mariachis: $350 per hour for weeknights, $400-$450 per hour for weekends. Weekends may have a minimum number of hours.
  • Six mariachis: $400 per hour for weeknights, $450-$500 per hour for weekends.

How many mariachis can a band have?

A mariachi band for hire can have as many players as you like. Modern mariachi bands typically have a minimum of four players with the trumpet playing a vital musical role along with stringed instruments such as the violin, guitarrón (a Mexican bass guitar with a deep body), vihuela (a Spanish stringed guitar) and guitar. Strong vocals are also an important component of mariachi bands for hire, since one or more of the players will be singing during the performance. For a truly spectacular show, you can hire a mariachi band with 15 or more players. The medley of stringed instruments, multiple trumpets, soaring vocals, and even an accordion or harp is powerful and beautiful. Mariachis typically wear the traditional costume of charros — Mexican horsemen. The look is a very regal, monotone suit, often in black or white, with silver adornments and embroidery. Mariachi bands often wear sombreros as well. Traditional mariachi bands were only made up of two or more players, according to a UNESCO report celebrating the cultural heritage of the musical style. The style of music originated in the state of Jalisco. Now the style of music is symbolic of Mexico but is celebrated all over the world, and adds a fabulous vibrancy to any group’s events, parties and weddings.

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