What artists have sung to Rafael Caro Quintero?

Explore the controversial world of drug trafficking through the lens of the popular Mexican music genre, the corrido, with songs inspired by the life and crimes of notorious capo Rafael Caro Quintero.
  1. Many Mexican musical groups have written and performed songs about the life and crimes of drug trafficker Rafael Caro Quintero.
  2. The genre of music most commonly associated with these songs is the corrido, a popular style in Mexican music known for its storytelling and often controversial themes.
  3. Some examples of artists who have written songs about Caro Quintero include Los Cuates de Sinaloa, Los Tigres del Norte, Los Invasores de Nuevo León, El Tri, and others.

Currently, the corrido genre has focused on telling the story of controversial figures such as drug trafficker Rafel Caro Quintero, who has inspired several musical themes in and out of this musical style.

One of the most recent songs is “El número uno por siempre,” by the group Los Cuates de Sinaloa, which is led by cousins Gabriel and Nano Berrelleza, who, in a 2020 interview with the program “Suelta la Sopa,” commented that they had had the opportunity to sing the song before Caro Quintero.

It should be noted that Caro Quintero is one of the most wanted capos by the FBI and that they did not feel that they were offending anyone because they were simply celebrating that a person regained his freedom.

Artists who have sung to Caro Quintero

We come from a ranch in Sinaloa; we are subjected to these types of themes, stories, and songs. We know that everyone enjoys his corridos, especially when they are like Mr. Caro Quintero’s, which is a celebration of joy because we are all happy that he is free from his imprisonment,” stated Gabriel Berrelleza on that occasion.

At another time, in 1985, when a very young Gloria Trevi, amid her rebelliousness and refusal to speak her mind, wrote a song to Caro Quintero, but in her song, she did not praise what the drug lord had done, but rather complained about the consequences of his illegal activities.

This song was released during an interview with Joaquín López Doriga for his program Chapultepec 18 when he had just been imprisoned for the death of DEA agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena.

Also, Los Tigres del Norte have stood out for being one of the groups with the best corridos within the genre. They even have the album Corridos Prohibidos (2001), which has several samples of it, including the song “R.Uno.”

This song was inspired by the operation implemented by the DEA and the Mexican Army in 1984 in Búfalo, Chihuahua, where they found 10,000 kilos of marijuana and which led to Quintero’s subsequent arrest in Costa Rica.

Also, rock artists highlighted it.

The same year in which Caro Quintero was arrested in Costa Rica and extradited to Mexico, the group Los Invasores de Nuevo León presented their song “Rafael Caro Quintero,” in which they told the story of how the drug lord had been captured in Central America and what the authorities wanted to do with him, to take him to the United States to stand trial.

In addition to pointing out that he was accused of the death of an American policeman and the kidnapping of a tapatía (Sara Cosío Vidaurri) and ends with the verse: “La fiera ya esta enjaulada, pero se oyen los rugidos allá por la madrugada, sus deseos serán cumplidos, échese a huir la manada si es que quieren quedar vivos” (The beast is already caged, but the roars can be heard there at dawn, your wishes will be fulfilled, let the herd flee if you want to stay alive).

Mexican rock was not left behind either, and El Tri made a song, very much in their style, where they talk about the love story between Caro Quintero and Sara Cosío, daughter of Octavio César Cosío, ex-secretary of Education in Jalisco, and niece of Guillermo Cosío Vidaurri, ex-governor of that state.

The scene that describes this song is the one lived in 1985 when they were found in Costa Rica, a situation in which the authorities thought that the young woman was kidnapped and offered her help, but to everyone’s surprise, she said she was there of her own free will; the song was released in 1987, and it was Caro Quintero himself who asked Alex Lora and his band to play it in the concert they offered in the Reclusorio Norte at the end of the 80s.

It should be noted that these are just some examples of artists who have interpreted songs inspired by the Sinaloan. Still, there are many more who have done the same, such as Rafa Caro, Gerardo Ortiz, Virlán García, Los Dos Carnales, El Chalinillo, Lalo Mora, El Komander, Pedro y Manuel, to mention a few.