Born in Caracas, Dj Afro (aka José Luis Pardo) is a Brooklyn based Guitarist, DJ, composer and producer renowned as a founder of the Latin American band Los Amigos Invisibles.
Grammy award winner and 6 times nominee, including song of the year in 2013 (La que me gusta), Dj Afro has made his mark in Latin American dance music. Through his studio recordings, remixes, compilation albums, mixtapes, podcasts, and live performances, he has amassed a stellar body of work rich with soul and flavor.
Pardo began his DJ career in Caracas in 1995, warming up for his band Los Amigos Invisibles. Club owners quickly took notice of his eclectic musical tastes and natural ability to move any dance floor, booking him in the hottest spots all over town.
Soon after Los Amigos finished their second album “The New Sound of the Venezuelan Gozadera”, Dj Afro discovered his passion for remixing. His first assignment was a highly acclaimed remix for the NY-based alternative rock band Soul Coughing. From that day forward, his reputation as a remixer exploded. He now has over 50 remixes under his belt, for a wide variety of musicians including The Beastie Boys, David Byrne, Devendra Banhart, Julieta Venegas, Natalia Lafourcade, and Basement Jaxx.
In 2003 DJ Afro founded Gozadera Records with his band, which served as a launching pad for numerous Venezuelan artists that were operating well under the radar of the mainstream music press. His compilations series, “Chill Out Venezuela”, and “Dance Venezuela” became a crucial platform for exposing new music, launching the careers of numerous artists in Latin America and beyond.
In 2001 Afro and the rest of Los Amigos Invisibles relocated to New York City, bringing their signature sound to the world. Once settled in, Afro became a regular in the New York club scene, burning up the turntables at downtown hot spots like Giant Step, Turntables on the Hudson, Cielo, and Nublu .
Through his work as a DJ, Afro soon caught the eye of legendary DJ and producer Louie Vega, who brought him on board as a session guitar player for Masters At Work (Louie Vega & Kenny Dope), Blue six, Nicodemus, Sir Piers, and Dimitri from Paris, just to name a few.
In 2007, Afro released a compilation of remixes: “Will Work For Fun”. The success of that album led to his first solo EP “1” and his first solo LP “Free” on Nacional Records.
That same year he began collaborating with New York singer/songwriter Manchildblack, releasing songs under the name “The Copasetic”
Always searching for new avenues of musical expression, Afro joined forces with 2 fellow Venezuelans in 2010, creating “Los Crema Paraiso”. Their debut LP’s departure from dance music, in favor of more Jazz & Latin sounds, took Afro fans by surprise. Now those same fans eagerly await the second album “De película”, set to hit the streets on March 2015.
In addition to DJing and gigging with Los Cremas Paraiso, Afro continues to produce and engineer an eclectic roster of other artists including Coup Couroux, Rawayana, Flying Fisch, Camila Luna, Sarah Amina, and Del exilio.
DJ Afro’s latest work “Orquesta Discotheque” is set to hit the streets in the fall of 2014 thru Nacional Records.