Carlos Samaniego created Mariachi Arcoiris back in 2000 for a pride event hosted by Cal State L.A., featuring all-queer band members. But it only lasted for a few months, due to the fact that he had aspirations to become an opera singer, which is why he studied Italian for two years, moved to Italy and eventually New York City. During this time, he played with various traditional mariachi bands, but he was not fully accepted by some band members due to his sexuality. So, he moved back to Los Angeles and re-created Mariachi Arcoiris.