How El Komander’s 2010 narcocorrido pays homage to ‘El Chapo’ Guzmán

The provocative connection between El Komander's narcocorridos and the notorious life of Mexican drug lord 'El Chapo' Guzmán

Before the so-called “corridos tumbados” took over the most important national and international charts, regional Mexican music was consolidated as one of the most popular and acclaimed genres both in the north of the country and in the United States thanks to its multiple subgenres, bands, groups, and exponents, among which José Alfredo Ríos Meza, better known as El Komander, has been one of them.

Since his beginnings, the 40-year-old Sinaloa native has stood out for his “warlike” compositions, which contain multiple references to the activities that organized crime coordinates and carried out both in Mexican territory and in the country of the stars and stripes.

In this sense, it is not surprising that in some of his songs, the name of some criminal organization leaders is mentioned, as happened with Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán in a controversial song that El Komander released in 2010.

Joaquín Guzmán Loera se fugó del penal de Puente Grande en 2001 (MEXICO-DRUGS/CHAPITOS REUTERS/PGR/Handout via Reuters)
Joaquín Guzmán Loera escaped from Puente Grande prison in 2001 (MEXICO-DRUGS/CHAPITOS REUTERS/PGR/Handout via Reuters)

The initials “JGL” and the nickname “El Chapo ” are engraved in the history of drug trafficking in Mexico as they correspond to the man who, at the time, was the most wanted man by the U.S. justice system after the death of the terrorist Osama Bin Laden.

The former Sinaloa drug lord’s skills in negotiating drug trafficking across the border and his unusual escapes from maximum security prisons in Mexico consolidated his image as one of the most recognized drug traffickers in the world.

However, before his final arrest in 2016 in Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Joaquín Guzmán Loera had managed to evade both U.S. and Mexican authorities in different operations coordinated to capture him, and it is precisely one of these alleged escapes that El Komander narrated in a narcocorrido.

The narcocorrido of “El Komander”.

El Komander narró un supuesto escape de "El Chapo" en un narcocorrido que estrenó en 2010 (El Komander)
El Komander narrated an alleged escape from “El Chapo” in a narcocorrido he premiered in 2010 (El Komander).

“The roosters fought, the horses danced, the horns blared, and the band played. At three o’clock in the afternoon, the party was big, and at Chapo’s ranch, the boys arrived in big jumbo jets and planes. Military convoys arrived at the ranch looking for the lord,” is heard in the first verse of the controversial song by José Alfredo Ríos Meza.

The popular song was part of the album Archivo Privado de El Komander, made up of 13 songs released on September 27, 2010, in its physical version and on platforms such as YouTube.

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At the time, Joaquín Guzmán Loera was a fugitive from justice after escaping from the Federal Center for Social Readaptation (Cefrereso) No. 2 in Puente Grande, Jalisco, in January 2001. One version of the escape suggests that the co-founder of the Sinaloa Cartel left the maximum security prison in a laundry cart, evading all prison authorities.

Before being recaptured in 2014, El Chapo Guzmán continued to build his criminal career hand in hand with the Sinaloa Cartel, with whom he coordinated multiple criminal activities in both Mexico and the United States so that multiple military operations were deployed to recapture him.

“There are thirteen minutes left for the escape plan, and only four minutes left to achieve it. Don’t shoot, don’t kill a single kid, that was the order that has to be obeyed, if the Lord doesn’t escape, tear them to pieces, shoot with rage, you can’t fail”, can be heard later in the narcocorrido Estrategia de Escape by José Alfredo Ríos Meza.

El Komander detalló cómo los hombres de Joaquín Guzmán Loera estuvieron dispuestos a luchar contra el Ejército Mexicano para evitar la detención de su jefe (Instagram)
El Komander detailed how Joaquin Guzman Loera’s men were willing to fight the Mexican Army to prevent the arrest of their boss (Instagram).

In his controversial track, El Komander also recounts how supposedly the men in charge of Joaquín Guzmán Loera were armed and prepared to lunge at the group of military personnel who arrived at “El Chapo’s” ranch to apprehend him, even pointing to an alleged fear on the part of the armed forces.

“The guys didn’t go in. They were also thinking about it, looking above at armed people who were unafraid, people with balls, ready to kill themselves and die on the line. The guys were running, the radios were playing, the people were watching, and El Chapo was escaping,” can be heard towards the end of the Narcocorrido.

El Komander concludes his controversial song by confirming that El Chapo Guzmán managed to escape from that Mexican Army operation and that one of his allies managed to get him out of danger somewhere in the mountains.

“They managed to escape with everything, and Chapito, the rhinos, and the horses opened the roads, stuck in the mountains waiting for a dude who took them far away from danger. There was one minute left, and flying in the sky, to celebrate, he toasted with champagne,” can be heard at the end of the narcocorrido that, as of this writing, has more than 500,000 views on YouTube.