"In my music, there is a search for expression, self-discovery, innovation and, like a photographer with a camera: to “capture” particular moments in life".
Guatemalan singer-songwriter and guitarist Jairo Taracena has alternated his musical career path between different corners of the globe. From his native Guatemala, and her northern neighbor of Mexico to the lowlands of Belgium in western Europe, combining the rich sounds of Latin-America folk with the power and energy of both pop and rock.
Above all, Jairo considers himself a “song maker.” Using this medium, he searches for expression, self-discovery, innovation and, like a photographer with a camera, to “capture” particular moments in life. Jairo incorporates diverse topics into his lyrics which can go from light, amusing and quotidian, to emotional and sensitive, even provoke existential self-reflection.
Having primarily studied rock and indie-pop music while abroad, Jairo rediscovered his latino roots. Fusing these two concepts together, Jairo is able to create unique musical landscapes that transcend cultural frontiers and bring unlikely audiences together for a truly international experience. As a testament to his multiculturalism, Jairo is equally comfortable performing in Spanish as in English, French, and Italian.
Looking back on his full musical history, Jairo first started dabbling in performance at the age of 12. At this tender age, he began studying drum set at his local church. During this time, his brother started learning guitar. Waiting for the class to end, Jairo would then sneak in and play around. During these formative moments, he discovered the beauty of melody and the soul-touching powers of harmony. Shortly thereafter, he penned his first song at only 14 years old.
Throughout this formative period, Jairo formed various bands and performed with a variety of amateur musicians. After what felt like years of trial-and-error, he finally realized one of his life goals; having one of his songs played on the radio.
Shortly thereafter, Jairo formed the Progressive-Rock band Cuatro Purpura. Thanks to their success, they were chosen to be part of the “Pepsi Chart Contest Guatemala,” a contest featuring some of the country’s most promising up-and-coming musical acts.
This popular competition thrusted the group into the national spotlight, where they performed on both national radio and television, receiving acclaimed reviews by the local press. As a result of this exposure, Jairo’s song “Dame Vida” is now a classic in the Guatemalan musical scene.
Continuing as a member of Cuanto Purpura, Jairo set his sights on the international stage. This vision brought him to Madrid, Spain, where the band signed a deal with record label Pies Compagnia Discografica. although due to external circumstances the offer never reached materialization.
Following the breakup of his band, Jairo moved to Mexico City to continue his musical education. He launched his solo career, performing in bars, private events, and local festivals, opening for established acts, such as El Circulo.
Currently, Jairo is living in Brussels, Belgium. On top of pursuing his own projects, he has collaborated with Italian songwriter Francesco Palmeri, joining him on his tours of Belgium and the Netherlands. During these concerts he has served as opening the act for Belgo-Spaniard singer “Belle Perez”, the Belgian Project “Wamblee.” He has also composed songs for other artists such as “Tam Echo Tam”.
Jairo Taracena’s first solo release, Viento Primavera, reflects his experiences and influences during his first years living across the Atlantic in Western Europe. On this record, he combines different mixtures and variations of Latin-American music, including bolero, fusión, bossa, rumba and interprets them in a pop-rock context. The album was recorded and mixed in both Mexico and Belgium. It’s available for purchase on most online stores as well as many popular music-streaming services.
Currently, Jairo is working on his second record “De Locura y De Razon” (Of Reason and Madness) He is expecting to release it later this year.