Luis Armando Lozada Cruz (born September 8, 1971), better known as Vico C, is an American reggaeton rapper and songwriter. Widely regarded as the “Father of Latin Hip Hop”, as well as the founding father of reggaeton, Vico C has played an influential role in the development of Latin American hip hop and urban music.
|Birth name||Luis Armando Lozada Cruz|
|Born||September 8, 1971|
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
|Origin||San Juan, Puerto Rico|
|Genres||Christian hip hop, hip hop, reggaeton, rap, urban, ballad, alternative reggaeton, reggae|
|Occupation(s)||Rapper, songwriter, musical producer, arranger|
Early life and influenceEdit
He was born in New York and raised in Puerto Rico. Nicknamed The Philosopher, Luis Armando Lozada Cruz adopted the professional name Vico C. Vico C describes reggaeton as "essentially hip-hop but with a flavor more compatible to the Caribbean."[This quote needs a citation] Though he maintains they are of the same essence, Vico C believes the difference lies in the quintessential music style; the beat or rhythm of the music.
As one of the founders of hip hop in Spanish, Vico C was able to show that it was possible for one to be able to rap entirely and compellingly in Spanish using just occasional English phrases or slang terms. He can be seen in the rap movement as far back as its "underground" days ghostwriting and producing music for other young performers in the Puerto Rican rap scene.
Vico C grew up in the Puerta de Tierra barrio in San Juan. He got enrolled in acting classes by the age of nine and began his professional rapping career in 1985. At first, he used to go to bodegas (grocery stores) or pharmacies, buy home recording tapes, record himself singing his songs and then sell the tapes to friends or family. Vico C was discovered by DJ Negro in 1985 whom immediately saw the great potential of hip hop in spanish and chose to record Vico's earliest demos. Upon the positive reaction from the barrio, DJ Negro brought Vico to the most successful hip hop promoter in Puerto Rico, Jorge Oquendo (also known as 'El Sexy Boy'). Jorge Oquendo formed the record label 'Prime Records' with Vico C as the lead artist of the label. Prime Records eventually received a distribution deal via Sony BMG latin. Prime Records is one of the most successful and influential record labels in the history of spanish rap and reggaeton known for being the home to legendary acts such as DJ Negro, Vico- C, El General, Lisa M, Falo, Brewley MC and more...
In 1989, rap in Puerto Rico was at a popular high, and although Vico-C was considered the Godfather of Spanish Hip Hop, there were also others who were rapping in the ghettos (Barrios) such as Brewley MC, Piro JM, Jimmy MC, Bimbo, (Lisa M, Jelly Dee Franceska, came afterwards) Ruben DJ was actually Vico-C's D.J before DJ Negro and the second of the rappers to record, by releasing "La Escuela". Brewley MC had already recorded "El Sida Rap with Green Records" Vico C entered the charts with his song "La Recta Final" which he personally designed the album cover for with his art talents. Vico C was signed to Prime Records and started touring to places like New York, Chicago, Miami, Mexico, Venezuela, El Salvador, Panama, the Dominican Republic.
Vico C, in 1992 came through with more songs, his singles "Saborealo" and "María" became gold and platinum albums, respectively. Also in 1994, he established his own record company VC Records, promoting such singers as Lissy Estrella, Francheska, and Lisa M who were originally his back up dancers. In the mid-1990s, Vico C was involved in a near-fatal motorcycle accident. His injuries led to his abuse of heroin, cocaine and alcohol.
Soon after, he became an evangelical Christian and went into a voluntary semi-retirement. In 1998, he resurfaced, with the Christian rap CD Aquel Que Había Muerto. The new CD went gold and in 1999, he returned to the touring scene with his concert Antes y después. Soon after, he released a sequel to Aquel Que Había Muerto. With that, he earned the Latino Rap of the year award by Billboard.
In 2004, Vico C released an album titled En Honor A La Verdad. While it was not a major hit it still sold well and one of the album's singles "El Bueno, El Malo y El Feo", referring to Eddie Dee, himself and Tego Calderón respectively. The single was widely heard. The single was a great combination of the best "Conscience" subgenre of rap artists.
Many consider Vico C to be a pioneer of rap[weasel words]. Music industry figures[who?] called him the "father and creator of rap". He has worked alongside artists including Big Boy, Eddie Dee, Ivy Queen, Héctor & Tito, Tego Calderón. He has also worked with producers Baby Ranks, Tony Touch and Luny Tunes.
Vico C is renowned as the most influential artist in the history of Spanish Hip Hop and Reggaeton throughout Latin America and Spain. Vico is recognized for having lyrics that were thoughtful, insightful, socially conscious as well as catchy and danceable songs for all kind of audiences. The musical blueprint implemented by DJ Negro and Vico C is the precursor of the genre now known as reggaeton. Many spanish hip hop/reggaeton journalists and experts consider Vico C as the greatest or one of the greatest artists in the history of the genre.
- Underground (1985)
- Soy De La Calle (1988)
- La Recta Final (1989)
- Misión: La Cima (1990)
- Hispanic Soul (1991)
- Xplosión (1993)
- Con Poder (1996)
- Aquel Que Había Muerto (1998)
- Emboscada (2002)
- En Honor A La Verdad (2003)
- Desahogo (2005)
- Babilla (2009)
- La Vida del Filósofo(2017)
- Dos Tiempos Bajo Un Mismo Tono (1994)
- Greatest Hits (1995)
- Historia (1998)
- Historia 2 (1999)
- Serie 2000 (2000)
- Serie Platino (2000)
- The Files: The Greatest Hits (2004)
- El Filósofo: Platinum Edition (2008)
- Colaboraciones de Ayer y Hoy (2011)
- Frente A Frente – with Julio Voltio (2013)
|2017||Vico C||Vanguard Award||Won|||
|1999||Aquel Que Había Muerto||Latin Rap Album of the Year||Won|||
|2002||Vivo||Latin Rap Album of the Year||Nominated|||
|2003||Emboscada||Latin Rap Album of the Year||Nominated|||
|2004||En Honor A La Verdad||Latin Rap/Hip-Hop Album of the Year||Nominated|||
|2005||"Los 12 Discípulos"
Shared with Eddie Dee, Gallego, Tego Calderón, Daddy Yankee, Julio Voltio, Ivy Queen, Zion & Lennox, Johnny Prez, Nicky Jam and Wiso G
|Tropical Airplay Track of the Year, New Artist||Nominated|||
|2006||Desahogo||Latin Rap/Hip-Hop Album of the Year||Nominated|||
|2006||Desahogo||Best Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album||Nominated|||
|2002||Vivo||Best Urban Music Album||Won|||
|2004||En Honor A La Verdad||Won|||
|"Sentimiento"||Best Urban Song||Nominated|
|2016||Vico C||Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame – Performer||Nominated|||
|2003||Emboscada||Urban Album of the Year||Nominated|||
|2006||Desahogo||Urban Album of the Year||Nominated|||
|"Desahogo"||Video of the Year||Nominated|
- Courage Defined: Vico C Interview
- Interview: Vico C Still Holds it Down for Puerto Rico
- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bzJi0SgjvPo Interview with Jorge Oquendo
- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vwvCrLDIX7g interview with DJ Negro
- Vico C Profile
- http://nuncacreas.net/2014/lapiz-conciente-declara-vico-c-es-el-mejor-de-todos-los-tiempos/ renowned dominican mc Lapiz Conciente declares Vico C as the greatest of all-time
- http://www.flowradio.fm/vico-c-qel-filosofoq-llegara-a-colombia-en-el-mes-de-noviembre/ article in Colombia about Vico's legacy in the country and worldwide
- http://www.latercera.com/noticia/vico-c-padre-del-reaggeton-reniega-del-genero/ story of Vico C AND INTERVIEW in Chile
- Flores, Griselda (December 19, 2016). "2017 ASCAP Latin Awards to Honor El Gran Combo & Vico C". billboard.com. Retrieved January 21, 2017.
- Ross, Karl (June 26, 1999). "Career Resuscitation: Christian Rapper Vico C Preaches Positivity". Billboard magazine. Retrieved January 22, 2017.
- "2002 Billboard Latin Awards". billboard.com. May 10, 2002. Retrieved January 22, 2017.
- "2003 Billboard Latin Awards Finalists". billboard.com. February 2, 2003. Retrieved January 22, 2017.
- "Billboard Latin Music Awards Finalists". hispanicad.com. January 17, 2004. Retrieved January 22, 2017.
- "2005 Billboard Latin Music Awards Finalists". billboard.com. February 11, 2005. Retrieved January 22, 2017.
- "2006 Billboard Latin Music Awards Finalists". billboard.com. February 16, 2006. Retrieved January 22, 2017.
- "The Complete List of Grammy Nominations". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. December 8, 2005. p. 3. Retrieved July 12, 2010.
- "List of winners at the 3rd annual Latin Grammy awards". lasvegassun.com. September 19, 2002. Retrieved January 21, 2017.
- "Juanes wins four Latin Grammys". chronicle.augusta.com. September 4, 2003. Retrieved January 21, 2017.
- "5th Annual Latin Grammy Awards Winners". billboard.com. September 1, 2004. Retrieved January 21, 2017.
- "Complete list of 6th annual Latin Grammy nominations". usatoday30.usatoday.com. November 2, 2005. Retrieved January 21, 2017.
- Cobo, Leila (October 11, 2010). "Latin Grammy 2010 Predictions: And the Winner Is..." billboard.com. Retrieved January 21, 2017.
- "NOMINEES 18th Annual Latin GRAMMY Awards". The Latin Recording Academy. September 26, 2016. Retrieved September 26, 2017.
- Flores, Griselda (March 18, 2016). "Juanes, Marco Antonio Solis, Shakira & More Nominated for Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame". Billboard. Retrieved March 3, 2017.
- Cantor-Navas, Judy (March 20, 2018). "Who Are the 2018 Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame Nominees?". Billboard. Retrieved March 20, 2018.
- "Thalia, Alejandro Sanz, Paulina Rubio, Enrique Iglesias, Lupillo Rivera, Carlos Vives, Celia Cruz, Juanes and a Host of Hispanic Artists Compete for the Latin Music Awards, Premio Lo Nuestro". Univision. Business Wire. November 19, 2002. Retrieved September 27, 2013.
- "Nominados al Premio Lo Nuestro 2006". People. Time, Inc. December 12, 2005. Retrieved September 27, 2013.