Venezuelan multi-instrumentalist, composer and singer Rafael Creco was born in Maracaibo. He graduated from the prestigious José Luis Paz Conservatory as a regular member of the National Youth Orchestra.

In 1988 he moved from Zulia to Caracas, where he continued his studies. In his home country, he enjoys a successful career as a member of Venezuela's premier group, the multi-Latin Grammy Award winners, Guaco. He has toured the world with them for decades. In addition, Rafel is also a children's book author and gifted photographer.

Now he will release this debut album on Blue Canoe Records. On it Rafael gets support from guest musicians such as Steve Khan (guitar), Randy Brecker (trumpet & braces) etc. This album is a tribute to his family, but also to his home country, and to his memories.

He says the following about it: “Upon discovering the rhythms of Central Africa and composer Steve Reich caused me to listen to reiteration, the art of repetition from another angle. It was almost like looking at a butterfly's wings through a microscope. Each song contains reiterative cues, layers of sounds, carefully designed textures that were vital to creating a work that could give the impression of being a simple yet coherent architectural illusion.”

That album opens with the musical fable 'Once Upon a Time', which teaches us that we should never reveal our dreams until they have become reality. ‘Ondé’ he wrote during the political protests in Caracas, when many young people were killed. ‘Mr. Iwai'’ is a ghost story, and is about the courage and fragility of people who dare to protest.

Central African music is central to 'African Boy', after which 'Igno Two' is symbolic of a clumsy robot. At the same time, it is a hymn to clumsiness and inefficiency. With '10th Avenue' he returns to his childhood in Zulia, followed by the instrumental intermezzo '11-2'. 'Mantra' sounds repetitive and mediative, followed by 'Time', about the pain of the Venezuelan diaspora.

Then comes 'An Illusion', a slow guaguancó or a fast yambú... 'Belén' was inspired during a trip to Panama, and 'Five Miniatures for Solo Piano' says it all. The instrumental 'Ghost Owner' closes, full of improvisations.

Less to my taste.



Once Upon a Time
Mr. Iwai
African Boy
Igno Two
10th Avenue
Time 4:
An Illusion
Five Miniatures for Solo Piano
Ghost Owner


Once Upon A Time (Rafael Greco)
Rafael Greco: Voice, Background Vocals, Electric Piano, Keyboards, Organ, Samples, [Toy Percussion, Caxixi, Percussion, Bike Bell, and Cowbell.
Luisito Quintero: Congas, Timbales, Cowbell, Bongos, Guiro, and Maracas.

Robert Quintero: Cumaco.
Rodner Padilla: Electric Bass.
Santiago Bosch: Rhodes Solo, Oberheim Xpander, and Electro Harmonix POG2.

Onde (Rafael Greco)
Rafael Greco: Voice, Background Vocals, Basses, Electric Piano, Keyboards, Samples, Clave, Claps and Prato.
Luisito Quintero: Darbuka, Timbales, Congas, Cowbell, Maracas and Shaker.
Steve Khan: Acoustic Guitar.
Randy Brecker: Muted Trumpet and Flugelhorn Solo.

Mr. Iwai (Rafael Greco)
Rafael Greco: Voice, Background Vocals, Electric Piano, Keyboards, Samples, Percussion, Loops, Cymbals, Guitar Samples, and Synth Bass.
Rigel Mitxelena: Electric Guitars.
Pimpi Santistevan: Background Vocals and Voice.
Cony: Barking

African Boy (Music: Rafael Greco/ Lyrics: Guillermo Carrasco)
Rafael Greco: Voice, Background Vocals, Electric & Acoustic Piano, Keyboards, Organ, and Samples.
Luisito Quintero: Timbales, Congas, Bongos, Cowbell, Maracas, Venezuelan Maracas, Kata, and Talking Drum.
Robert Quintero: Shekere and Bongos solo.
Rodner Padilla: Electric Bass.
Steve Khan: Acoustic Guitar, Acoustic Guitar Solo, and Electric Guitars.
Guillermo Carrasco: Background Vocals.
Humberto Casanova: Drums and Snare with brushes.

Igno Two (Rafael Greco)
Rafael Greco: Samples, Loops, Keyboards, Celesta, Cardboard box with brushes, Cymbal, Melodica and Toy Percussion.
Juanma Trujillo: Electric Guitar.
10Th Avenue (Rafael Greco)
Rafael Greco: Voice, Background Vocals, Electric Piano, Keyboards, Organ, Samples, Synth Bass, and Maracas.
Luisito Quintero: Tabla, Djembe with brushes, Djembe, Congas, Shaker and
Broomcorn Brush.
Fernando Valladares: Drums and Snare with brushes.
Santiago Bosch: Synth Solo and Synth FX.

11-2 (Rafael Greco)
Rafael Greco: Keyboards, Wurlitzer and Whistle.
Pimpi Santistevan: Sample.

Mantra (Rafael Greco)
Rafael Greco: Voice, Background Vocals, Keyboards, Samples, Melodica, Caxixi, Shaker, Synth Bass, Toy Percussion, Espresso Machine, and Cymbals.
Time (Rafael Greco)
Rafael Greco: Voice, Background Vocals, Keyboards, Electric Piano, Bass, and Guitar Samples.
Juan Ángel Esquivel: Electric Guitars, Electric Guitar Solo and Ebow.
Mark Walker: Drums, Triangle, Rainstick, Shaker, Cymbals, Chimes, Percussion, Caxixi and Snare Loop.
Luisito Quintero: Congas.
Lucia Greco: Voice and Background Vocals.

An Illusion (Rafael Greco)
Rafael Greco: Voice, Background Vocals, Keyboards, Electric Piano, Wurlitzer, Samples, Synth Bass, and Melodica.
Luisito Quintero: Quinto, Congas, Kata, Clave, Shaker, Shekere, Peruvian Cajon and Maracas.

Belen (Rafael Greco)
Rafael Greco: Voice, Background Vocals, Keyboards, Electric Piano, Organ, Wurlitzer and Rubber Drums.
Luisito Quintero: Calabash, Tabla, Timbales, Cowbell, Guiro, Bongos, Congas, Maracas, Shakers, Clave, Antique Cymbals and Tamborito.
Robert Quintero: Shekere
Rodner Padilla: Electric Bass.
Dani Barón: Electric Guitar.
Víctor Mestas: Electric Piano (guajeo)
Juanma Trujillo: Trains Samples
Marcial Istúriz: Background Vocals.

Five Miniatures for Solo Piano (Rafael Greco)
Arnaldo Pizzolante: Acoustic Piano.
Pimpi Santistevan: Whistle.

Ghost Owner (Rafael Greco/Juanma Trujillo/Germán Landaeta)
Rafael Greco: Tenor Saxophone.
Juanma Trujillo: Electric Guitar.
Germán Landaeta: Tracks Samples Selection & their arrangement.
Jorge Coindet