He was born to José Gonzalo Gilberto Rivera Ramírez and María de Lourdes Guerra Martínez Antonio, on March 15, 1986. Rivera became a local celebrity while still a child, winning several singing contests and hosting a radio show on Radio Huamantla. He rose to fame when he won the third generation of La Academia in 2004 at the age of 18. In 2005 he finally signed with Sony BMG and began plans to record his first album. While doing that he also entered Desafio de Estrellas 2 in which he placed 5th. He also played the role of "Fausto" in the TV Azteca series La vida es una canción ("Life is a song"). He also made a cameo appearance in the serial Los Sánchez. On October 3, 2006, he released his first and eponymous CD/DVD. In 2008, he starred the musical of Broadway Beauty and the Beast in Mexico for a couple of weeks, as a guest actor. Starting July 2009, Carlos played Sky in the Mexico City production of Mamma Mia! Carlos stars as Simba in the 2011 Madrid, Spain production of The Lion King / El Rey León.