Pancho Villa’s Skull Bring Mexican Mariachi to Detroit’s Punk Scene

Two brothers are fusing their cultural heritage with furious punk-tempo riffs. They’re performing at Trumbullplex this weekend.

Courtesy Pancho Villa’s Skull

Pancho Villa’s Skull is a duo comprised of brothers Tino and Rolando Ybarra that tap their heritage to influence the band’s punk-mariachi styling. 

Tino started out as a solo singer/songwriter on acoustic guitar, forging a furious blend of punk-tempo riffs to the traditional style of Mariachi, which he encountered on family trips to Mexico. His brother, Rolando, was initially the audio engineer for Tino’s first releases, but he wound up joining the band a few years ago adding percussion and backing vocals. The brothers came to 101.9 WDET’s studios to chat with CultureShift’s Jeff Milo about the storytelling roots that Mariachi, as folk music, shares with punk. 

Click on the player above to hear CultureShift’s Jeff Milo interview Pancho Villa’s Skull. 

Pancho Villa’s Skull will be performing at BASH FEST 2019, an anti-racist show at Trumbullplex in Woodbridge on Saturday, July 13. $10 suggested donation.

This story is a part of Detroit StoryMakers.

WDET’s Detroit StoryMakers initiative empowers local storytellers in bringing Detroit’s stories to life. Support for this initiative comes from The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Michigan Council of Arts and Cultural Affairs and through matching gifts from station donors.


  • Jeff Milo
    Jeff Milo is the host of "MI Local" on 101.9 WDET. He's a longtime music journalist documenting the Michigan scene for 20 years.