Texas native Joe "King" Carrasco has devoted his career to re-creating the Tex-Mex, Farfisa organ rock & roll sound of such '60s groups as the Sir Douglas Quintet and Sam the Sham & the Pharoahs. After playing in a succession of bands around Texas in the late '60s and early '70s, Carrasco founded his band El Molino in 1976 and recorded Tex-Mex Rock-Roll in 1978.
By 1979, he had formed the Crowns and was calling his music "nuevo wavo," playing especially in New York, where he appeared on-stage in a cape and crown. He was signed to the U.K. Stiff label and Joe Boyd's Hannibal label in the U.S., and released Joe "King" Carrasco and the Crowns in 1980. By 1982, he had moved up to major label MCA for Synapse Gap, followed by Party Weekend (1983). He moved to Rounder for 1987's Bandido Rock, credited to Joe "King" Carrasco y las Coronas. During the '90s and 2000s, he added reggae and cumbia to his Tex-Mex stew, with releases on Royal Texacali and Anaconda.