Ledes from the Land of Enchantment

Mariachi stamps to be unveiled in ABQ

The United States Postal Service will release the mariachi stamps in Albuquerque on Friday, July 15. (Courtesy of USPS)

The music of mariachi is embedded in New Mexico culture.

On Friday, July 15, the United States Postal Service will premiere the new mariachi postage stamps in Albuquerque.

California-based artist Rafael López designed the five pieces of art adorned on the stamps.

Each musician is dressed in the traje de charro — the traditional outfit for mariachi performers. Each of the performers is outfitted with the iconic instruments such at the guitar, guitarrón, vihuela, violin and trumpet.

The geometric shapes in the background of each stamp are a nod to Mexican villages, where mariachi music originated.

The USPS will unveil the stamps at 11:30 am Friday, July 15, at the Kiva Auditorium, 401 2nd St. NW. The event is part of the Mariachi Spectacular de Albuquerque, where it is celebrating its 30th anniversary.

Peter Sanchez said having the unveiling at Mariachi Spectacular is important because the annual event in Albuquerque raises the profile of mariachi music.

Sanchez is the chief executive officer of The Atrisco Company, who puts on the event.

“There are a lot of people following this and they chose our program to unveil the stamps,” Sanchez said. “The US Post Office chose our event to release it nationally which is quite an honor because we strive to make the event the premiere mariachi conference in the US”

Sanchez said having the event have a 30-year track record helped lure into the national attention.

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“Ten years ago, Atrisco was brought in to elevate the event,” Sanchez said. “We’ve pushed through a pandemic to continue to make Mariachi Spectacular happen again.”

According to the USPS, the stamps are part of the series of stamps new for 2022.

The mariachi stamps are “filled with passion, rhythm and stories of life, love and loss, mariachi music is an integral element of Mexican American culture that has become deeply rooted in the United States and has fans around the world.”

López grew up in Mexico City and currently creates art between San Diego and San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.

“Growing up I remember nostalgic weekends listening to the uniquely Mexican sound of Mariachi music in Plaza Garibaldi in Mexico City,” López said in a statement. “Colorful songs that tell stories of celebration, struggles, lost love and joy. Mariachi music is an emblem of Mexican cultural heritage with roots in the United States and followers around the globe.”

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