Our Story

Del Castillo is a cross-cultural power in music. Their original sound blends, rock, Latin, blues, and world music.

"Whether Del Castillo works in Spanish or English, it rocks righteously. The Spanish guitars’ flamenco vibe gives a dramatic flair, abetted by Alex Ruiz’s passionate vocals. They pull together Latin music’s romance and rock’s grit." says Billboard"

“… tumbling brilliance on nylon-string guitars…These eruptions of technique and taste conjure images of Eddie Van Halen fronting early Santana (with an assist from the Gipsy Kings).” says Rolling Stone. 

Between the release of their first CD, Brothers of the Castle back in 2001, to their 2006 release, Brotherhood, Del Castillo has received an astonishing 18 awards including SXSW/Austin Music “Album of the Year” Awards for Vida (2002) and Brotherhood (2006), “Band of the Year (2003)”, ASCAP’S “Best Independent Group of the Year (2005)”, and Austin Music Pundits “Best Live Act (2004)”. 

Film Director Robert Rodriguez attended a Del Castillo concert in 2002 and a great friendship developed between the two. Rodriguez then enlisted the group to contribute music to the soundtracks of his movies, such as “Spy Kids 3D”, “Once Upon a Time in Mexico”,“Sin City”, and “GRINDHOUSE”, and perform with him at the premieres.  Rodriguez was so impressed with Del Castillo that he wanted to record with them, so together, they formed CHINGON and recorded an amazing electric rendition of the Mexican classic song, “Malaguena Salerosa”.  Quentin Tarantino loved it so much that he re-did the ending sequence of “Kill Bill Vol. II” to fit the song into his movie. 

By 2004, Del Castillo was touring nationwide across the country playing with such diverse acts as Styx, Los Lonely Boys, Ozomatli, Don Henley, Los Lobos, and Willie Nelson and continued tour non-stop through 2006. They have 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. 

Willie Nelson enjoyed Del Castillo so much that he re-recorded his song “I Never Cared For You” with the group (which is included on Del Castillo’s Brotherhood CD) and calls it “his favorite version”.  Nelson has become a good friend of the band as well and the two look forward to touring together again soon. 

During 2008, the band began playing major festivals all over the country and even Canada and widening its audience at a much more rapid rate.  At California’s famous Strawberry Music Festival, they were deemed the highlight of the festival and broke the merchandise sales record.  Immediately after their incendiary debut performance at the Vancouver Folk Festival in Canada, they were selected to play the headlining stage for 2009. 

Rick and Mark del Castillo were selected in December 2008, by Gibson Global, to be two of only about SIX guitarists in the world to launch their new state-of the-art Dark Fire Gibson Les Paul guitar line. 

The band, now reunited with longtime charismatic frontman Alex Ruiz providing lead vocals, is recording new music with the brothers’ mesmerizing guitar driven songs, intertwined with hypnotic rhythms from Mike Zeoli and Jason Murdy, and pulsating bass lines from Albert Besteiro. 

Through their great artistic friendship and partnership with director Robert Rodriguez, Rick, Mark, Alex & Mike are featured actors performing on the TV show "From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series" on the El Rey Network! 

“I want to bring the most exciting and authentic content possible,” said Rodriguez when announcing the TV series. “Chingon and Del Castillo have been part of my experience providing this kind of entertainment to audiences since the beginning.” 

Del Castillo’s new instrumental track, “Las Seis Cuerdas de Tony Montuno” was recently hand picked to be featured on episode 2 of ABC’s new crime/drama Killer Women (01/14). 

Mark & Rick are featured on Ray Benson’s just released solo CD, A Little Piece. 

Del Castillo has received accolades and awards for their music and performances over the years. At the Ellnora Guitar Festival in Illinois, Matt Blackett from Guitar Player Magazine said: 

“Watching brothers Rick and Mark del Castillo take the stage and throw down dazzling nylon-string runs, in unison and in harmony, made me a big fan… infectious Latin rhythms with mind-boggling solos.”  ( view video) 

From the Montreaux Music Festival in Switzerland, and the Ellnora Guitar Festival in Illinois, to the California World Music Festival, Del Castillo thrives on performing live. Songwriting and recording projects are a priority during breaks in their tour schedule and a new release is upcoming! 



Album of the Year –“BROTHERHOOD” – Austin Music Awards/South By Southwest (2007) 

Best Latin Traditional Band – Austin Music Awards/South By Southwest (2007) 

Best Latin Traditional Band – Austin Music Awards/South By Southwest (2006) 

Best Independent Group of the Year – ASCAP Latin Music Awards (2005) 

Best Latin Traditional Band – Austin Music Awards / South By Southwest (2005) 

#1 Best Live Act by Austin Music Pundits – AMP Awards (2004) 

Best Latin Contemporary Band – Austin Music Awards / South By Southwest (2004) 

Best Latin Music Video 2003 for “Suenos Madrigales” from “DEL CASTILLO LIVE” DVD – Austin Music Network Music Video Awards 

7 major awards at Austin Music Awards / South By Southwest (2003): 
BEST DRUMS: Mike Zeoli 
RECORD PRODUCER: Rick del Castillo – “VIDA” 

Best World Music Band and Best Mexican/Traditional Latino Band – Austin Music Awards / South By Southwest (2002) 

Honored by the Austin Latin Music Association. Live performance filmed for “Sonidos del Barrios” TV series. (2002) 

Best Latin Rock Band – “Primetime Tejano” TV/Austin (2002) 


Outlaw Trail Concert – Paramount Theatre, Austin (2008) 

Dan Rather Reports: Latino Invasions On Hdnet (2007) 

Austin City Limits Music Festival – Austin (2006) 

Wakarusa Festival – Lawrence, Ks (2006) · Headlined Kgsr T-Shirt Party – Austin (2006) 

Latin Nation Tv (2006) 

Willie Nelson’s 4th Of July Picnic – 2 Nights: Carl’s Corner/Ft. Worth (2006) 

George Lopez Show / ABC-TV (2005) – featuring Rick, Mark, and Alex 

Black Tie and Boots Ball – Washington, DC during Inauguration week (2005) 

American/Latino TV (2004) 

Willie Nelson’s 4th of July Picnic – Ft. Worth (2004) 

Eric Clapton’s Crossroads Guitar Festival – Dallas (2004) 

Kill Bill, Vol 2 Premier. Performed in Chingon with Robert Rodriguez – Los Angeles (2004) 

House of Blues with special guest appearance by Robert Rodriguez – Los Angeles (2004) 

Headlined KGSR’s Spring T-Party – Austin (2004) 

“Chingon” Evening with Robert Rodriguez and Bruce Willis & The Accelerators – Austin (2004) 

Willie Nelson’s 4th of July Picnic – Ft. Worth (2003) 

Once Upon a Time in Mexico Premier. Robert Rodriguez, Antonio Banderas and Cheech Marin performed with the band – New York (2003) 

Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over World Premier. Robert Rodriguez performed with the band – Austin (2003) 

LATV, in conjunction with debut Los Angeles showcase performances at the Roxy and Conga Room (2003) 

2003 Convention of the National Council of La Raza – Austin (2003) 


National touring throughout the U.S. and in Europe, including many major music festivals such as the Sierra Nevada Music Fest, California Worldfest, and Great Woods Music Fest (Canada). 

National tour: shows with Los Lonely Boys/Indigenous/Styx/deSol/Don Henley. Performed at corporate event for Cartier in Geneva, Switzerland. Set attendance records at The Glenn and Antone’s in Austin. 

Headlined at the Mexico Now! Festival in New York and at the Open House Arts Festival at Kennedy Center in Washington, DC celebrating the Center’s 34th Anniversary. National headline tour, including Las Vegas/Kansas City/St. Louis/Nashville/Virginia Beach/Syracuse/Santa Fe/ Albuquerque. Shows with the Neville Brothers in Austin, and with Buddy Guy in Des Moines. 

Headline shows in New York/Atlanta/Memphis. Shows with Ozomatli in Tucson/New Orleans/ Orlando/Washington, DC/Detroit/Chicago/Minneapolis/Albuquerque/Santa Fe; with Los Lobos in Des Moines/Dallas/Austin/San Antonio/El Paso. 



“DEL CASTILLO LIVE” DVD (2004) — Filmed and edited by Robert Rodriguez 
“VIDA” CD (2002) 


“KILL BILL, VOL. 2” soundtrack CD (2004). Includes “Malaguena Salerosa” by Chingon (Del Castillo, Robert Rodriguez, and others). 
“MEXICO & MARIACHIS” CD (2004). Music From and Inspired by Robert Rodriguez’s “El Mariachi” Trilogy. Includes “Spanish Castle Tango” by Del Castillo; incidental guitar by Rick and Mark del Castillo, vocals by Alex Ruiz, and percussion by Rick Holeman on various songs. 
“ONCE UPON A TIME IN MEXICO” soundtrack CD (2003). Includes “Dias de los Angeles” by Del Castillo; incidental guitar by Mark and Rick del Castillo, and vocals by Alex Ruiz on various songs. 

(Del Castillo member participation in parenthesis) 

“KILL BILL, VOL. 2” (Film and Soundtrack CD) 

“Malaguena Salerosa” (Rick and Mark del Castillo/guitar, Alex Ruiz/vocals, Rick 

“ONCE UPON A TIME IN MEXICO” (Film and Soundtrack CD) 

“Eye Patch” (Rick del Castillo/guitar, percussion; Alex Ruiz/vocals) 
“Guitar Town” (Rick del Castillo/guitar) 
“Church Shootout” (Rick del Castillo/guitar, drums) 
“Dias de los Angeles “ (written, performed, produced by Del Castillo) 
“Mariachi vs. Marquez” (Rick del Castillo/guitar) 
“Coup De Etat” (Rick del Castillo/guitar) 
“El Mariachi” (Rick del Castillo/guitar) 
“Siente Mi Amor” (Rick del Castillo/guitar) 
“Cuka Rocka” (Rick and Mark del Castillo/guitar) 

– Music From and Inspired by Robert Rodriguez’s EL MARIACHI Trilogy (Films and CD) 

“Alacran y Pistolero” (Rick and Mark del Castillo/guitar, Alex Ruiz/backing vocals, Rick 
“Severina” (Rick and Mark del Castillo/guitar) 
“Theme from El Mariachi” (Rick del Castillo/guitar, Rick Holeman/percussion) 
“Back To The House That Love Built” (Acoustic) (Rick del Castillo/guitar, Rick 
“Spanish Castle Tango” (Written, Performed, and Produced by Del Castillo) 
“Once Upon A Time In Mexico” (Main Titles) (Rick and Mark del Castillo/guitar, Rick 

“SPY KIDS 3D: GAME OVER” (Film and DVD) 

“Game Over” (Rick del Castillo/guitar) 
“Isle Of Dreams” (Rick del Castillo/guitar)


It is the story of hard-living polo players set amid a Southwestern love triangle, incorporating border issues, drugs, and DVD piracy. A short film shot in Texas, Santa Fe, and Spain has been completed for presentation to investors and distributors. 

Rick del Castillo is co-writer, co-producer, and composed the soundtrack score, which was recorded at London’s Abbey Road Studios. 
New and existing Del Castillo songs are on the soundtrack. 
Rick del Castillo, Alex Ruiz, and Albert Besteiro appear in the film as actors and performers. 

Indie supernatural thriller based on the 500-year old Latin American legend of La Llorona, an anguished vengeful spirit acknowledged by 28 million believers. (Announcement of release plans is forthcoming.) 

Del Castillo with Patricia Vonne recorded the traditional song “La Llorona” for the opening and end credits. 
Del Castillo songs featured on the soundtrack: “Talkin’ To Ya” (from Brotherhood CD), “Don Nicolas” and “Suenos Madrigales” (from Vida CD)