DEL CASTILLO has become a symbol of the cross-cultural power of music with their eclectic blend of Flamenco, Rock, Latin, Blues, and World music.

It all began in late 2000 when Rick and Mark del Castillo decided to put together an album of Latin/Flamenco-style songs for their parents and friends in their hometown of Brownsville, Texas. The brothers, who had always played electric guitar in separate rock bands, had never played together and for the first time ever they began collaborating on songs on acoustic guitars.

Their good friend, vocalist/guitarist Alex Ruiz, began adding lyrics to the brothers’ instrumentals, and soon after, the other band members joined them. After receiving positive and encouraging responses from everyone who heard the songs they created together, the project began to evolve into a real band. Del Castillo was born!

They began writing material fusing many styles and influences, all the while retaining a solid Latin element, and in late 2001 they decided to test the waters as a live performance band. They played their first show in Austin, Texas, where they all live, and simultaneously, they released their first CD, Brothers of the Castle. Both the performance and CD received rave reviews from fans and critics alike.

In early 2002, the Austin American Statesman wrote, “…For a band that played its first gig only six months ago, Del Castillo is, indeed, going places.” Encouraged by the immediate response and acceptance, they started playing regular shows in Austin and quickly built a following. In March of that year, they received the first of what would be many awards that would follow at the Austin Music Awards during South By Southwest – “Best World Music Band” and “Best Mexican/Traditional Latino Band.”

During that time, the band had met filmmaker Robert Rodriguez, and he was now studying guitar with Rick. He invited Rick to contribute guitar on the soundtrack of his film “Spy Kids 3D: Game Over,” and at the premier of the film in Austin in 2003 the band performed live with Robert joining Rick and Mark on guitar.

All the while, the band continued to write and record new songs, and in late 2002 they released their follow-up CD, Vida, which took them to the next level. The Austin Chronicle wrote, “…if Vida is proof, their road to fame will be as short as an I-35 entrance ramp.” Robert filmed the band’s performance at the CD release party for Vida for a live DVD.

By 2003, Del Castillo had become one of Austin’s most popular bands and they swept the Austin Music Awards that year, winning seven awards including “Band of the Year” and “Album of the Year” for Vida. They continued to work with Robert, and Rick, Mark, and Alex contributed music on his next film, “Once Upon a Time in Mexico.” In addition to the music, Alex appeared in the film. The premier for the film was held in New York that year and Del Castillo performed live, joined on stage by Robert, Antonio Banderas, Cheech Marin, and Patricia Vonne.

The Del Castillo LIVE DVD, filmed and edited by Robert Rodriguez, was released in early 2004. Also that year, Quentin Tarrantino used a Del Castillo song in “Kill Bill, Vol. 2,” performed by Chingon, Robert Rodriguez’ musical collective of some of his closest musical compadres, including members of Del Castillo. Del Castillo, with Robert, performed as Chingon at the premier of the film in Los Angeles.

By now, the band was performing with great success throughout Texas. They joined the roster of CAA in 2004, which opened the door for extensive touring across the country, playing shows with such artists as Ozomatli, Los Lonely Boys, Los Lobos, Kinky, deSol, and others. They toured non-stop through 2006. They performed at three of Willie Nelson’s 4th Of July Picnics, and at Eric Clapton’s Crossroads Guitar Festival, and they have made numerous national and local TV appearances.

Brotherhood, the band’s third CD, was released in the Spring of 2006 and it was immediately acclaimed by the media across the board. Billboard Magazine said, “…Whether Del Castillo works in Spanish or English, it rocks righteously…They pull together Latin music’s romance and rock’s grit.” At SXSW 2007, Brotherhood won “Album of the Year” at the 2006/2007 Austin Music Awards. The band continues to tour throughout the country, thriving on performing live and building new audiences, and songwriting and recording are a priority during breaks in their tour schedule.

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