Guadalajara native Osvaldo Mendoza descends from a long line of mariachi musicians. For over four decades his father, trumpeter Cleto Mendoza, accompanied Vicente Fernández as a member of Mariachi Juvenil Azteca. Osvaldo’s grandfather, Vicente Mendoza, played in a mariachi together with the grandfather of Vargas member Andrés González.
At age 14, Osvaldo began playing violin with the youth mariachi Los Gallos, but it wasn’t until age 19 that he joined his first professional group, Mariachi Palenque. Stints with Los Toritos and Internacional Guadalajara followed, and in 2003 he spent a year in Spain with Mariachi Jalisco. In 2004 he traveled to Los Angeles, California, where he worked with mariachis Dorados de Villa, Estrellas de Jalisco and Sol de México.
Returning to Guadalajara in 2009, Osvaldo worked with mariachis San Francisco and Alas de México. In 2010, Carlos Martínez, then director of Mariachi Nuevo Tecalitlán, invited him to participate in the recording of Vicente Fernández’s album El Hombre Que Más Te Amó, and it was Carlos, now director of Mariachi Vargas, who invited Osvaldo to audition for the group in 2015. “Interpreting my county’s most iconic music is an honor, and it fills me with a great sense of pride,” says Osvaldo.