Farruko is a best-selling reggaeton and Latin pop singer/rapper from Puerto Rico. Since delivering his Latin Grammy-nominated 2010 debut album, El Talento del Bloque, he has released more than 160 singles solo or in collaboration with a who’s who of Latin pop superstars, including Pitbull, Daddy Yankee, Natti Natasha, Karol G, and Bad Bunny. His videos have registered hundreds of millions of views (2016′s “Chillax” featuring Ky-Mani Marley garnered more than 750 million on its own). Equipped with a smooth high baritone voice, he is equally adept at singing reggaeton, merengue, bachata, pop, Latin dance, and reggae. His third album, Farruko Presenta: Los Menores, was his first to crack the Top Five, while 2015′s Visionary reached number one. Two years later, his single “Krippy Kush” and its remix featuring Ocasio, Rvssian, Nicki Minaj, and 21 Savage peaked inside the Top Ten twice, propelling his smash TrapXficante album to number three. 2019′s Gangalee topped the Latin streaming list and went to number two at Top Latin Albums; it remained on the chart for two years.
Farruko’s given name is Carlos Efren Reyes, and he was born in Bayamón in 1991. At the age of 16, he began to post his songs under his stage name to MySpace. His first single, “Sexo Fuera del Planeta,” gained him thousands of followers, and from there he explored the potential of other social media networks. Due to his massive success on the Internet, he came to the attention of Puerto Rican radio and music industry executives, who enlisted his vocal talents for other artists.
Farruko’s debut album, El Talento del Bloque, appeared when he was 18. It was released by Siente Music and distributed by Universal. Most of its 13 songs were self-penned. The set became an almost-instant hit, and several singles followed from it. Some of the record’s highlights included collaborative tunes such as “Su Hija Me Gusta” with José Feliciano, “Ella No Es Fácil” with Cosculluela, and “Traime a Tu Amiga” with Arcángel and Julio Voltio. Farruko also issued the non-album smash “Pa’ Romper la Discoteca” with Daddy Yankee and Yomo. In 2012, he released his sophomore effort, TMPR: The Most Powerful Rookie. Its first smash single was “Feel the Rhythm” (“Siente el Ritmo”), though it was one of five. As a whole, the set demonstrated that Farruko was as comfortable in electro and pop circles as he was in reggaeton; it was nominated for a Latin Grammy.
After touring throughout Latin America and the United States and establishing large fan bases in locales such as Venezuela and Colombia, Farruko returned to recording in 2014. Farruko Presenta Los Menores was released in late October of that year. A week after its release, it topped the Latin Albums chart. Among the notable collaborations are “Salgo” with Arcángel, Ñengo Flow, D. Ozi, and Genio y Kelmitt; “Bebe Conmigo” with J Balvin; and “Interesada” with Luigi 21+. He won the Premios Juventud for the song “6 AM” with J Balvin and Latin Grammy Awards for Best Urban Performance and Best Urban Song in 2015. In February of that year, he released “Lejos de Aquí,” a remix with Yandel. In June, he was Alejandra Guzmán’s surprise duet partner on her first urban single, “Adios.” In July, he issued the pre-release track “Sunset” (featuring Shaggy and Nicky Jam), which garnered the top spot on various Latin airplay charts. In August, Farruko issued The Ones, a compilation of his charting singles and collaborations; it was a teaser for his next studio effort, Visionary, which appeared in late October. Pre-order excitement for the album propelled it to debut at number one on several Latin album charts; it remained there for several weeks after release. In 2017, he returned with his sixth studio album, TrapXficante. As its title suggested, the artist put his money on the fusion of reggaeton and urban pop with the second generation of Latin trap; the latter he considered still in its infancy, making some commercial inroads but still far from its future force as the face of commercial mainstream Latinx pop — despite its outlaw ties. He openly desired being the face of that future, and drew on a host of new-generation Latin trap artists as collaborators including Frank Miami, Sharo Torres, Rome, Mambo Kingz, DJ Luian, Maffio, Lil Geniuz, Bad Bunny, and Ladkani. The album was issued in September as Farruko undertook the U.S. leg of his global TrapXficante tour.
In the years that followed, he hopped onto a slew of singles and remixes with the likes of J Balvin, Pedro Capó, Nicky Jam, Zion & Lennox, and Alicia Keys. In the midst of this activity, Farruko was arrested in Puerto Rico in April 2018, which put him under house arrest. During that time, he recorded another album, his eighth overall, titled Gangalee. The set was issued in April 2019 and featured guests Anuel AA, Bad Bunny, and others. Later that year, he released En Letra de Otro, the soundtrack to the HBO Latino documentary-style music series special of the same name. Between its release and 2021, Farruko issued or collaborated on more than 50 singles. Several placed inside the Top Five, including “Krippy Kush,” 2020′s “La Toxica,” and 2021′s “Pepas.” ~ Thom Jurek