Happy Birthday Rafa!

Israel Romero, Emilio Oviedo and Rafael Orozco. Photo Credit: Nestor Alejandro

The Vallenato Legend, Rafael Orozco, who was murdered in 1992, would have turned 62 today.

The author of songs like “Villanuevera“, “Mi Novia y Mi Pueblo” (My Girlfriend and my People), “De Rodillas” (On Knees) and “La Gustadera“, he revolutionized the making of Vallenato and staging groups.
I grew up listening to my mom singing “Dime Pajarito” (Tell Me, Little Bird) and everywhere hearing songs like “Cariñito de Mi Vida” (Sweetheart of Mine). And although the years go by, Barranquilleros will always remember the many times they heard his voice in concerts and many of the lyrics that to this day are remembered with joy, with the same joy recorded on the tapes and LPs making his legacy immortal. Besides his talent, the best lesson he ever taught us is that anything can be accomplished, as long as we set out to do it with love.

Using electric guitars and synthesizers, Rafael changed the face of Vallenato and transformed the image of his group using colorful costumes that matched the eclectic personality of this singer and accordionist. Several countries around the world are in his debt and he is easily one of the most famous personalities in the history of Colombian music. He partnered with Julio de la Ossa, Luciano Poveda, Emilio Oviedo and Israel Romero forming the Binomio de Oro, which has been one of the most important musical projects of Colombian culture.

He has never ceased to be loved. From young people to the eldest citizens, they have seen in Orozco more than just a friend singing “La Creciente”; Rafa’s music has been and continues to be played on all Vallenato stations. With his death, we lost one of the best voices of our history; but in truth, he remains alive – he left us his charisma, his music, his love of Vallenato and his love for Clara and he will always be in our hearts.

In honor of Orozco’s rich musical legacy, here are a few of Spotify Users’ favorite songs by this perpetually great vallenato singer:

Rafael Orozco with Binomio de Oro – La Creciente. Video Credit: Codisco

Rafael Orozco – Muera una Flor. Video Credit: Osman Vargas

Rafael Orozco – Letra. Video Credit: Osman Vargas

Rafael Orozco – Dime Pajarito. Video Credit: Canal de rafaelorozco3