Jorge Drexler

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Jorge Drexler
Jorge Drexler 2010.jpg
Drexler performing in Santiago, Chile on September 25, 2010.
Background information
Birth name Jorge Abner Drexler Prada
Born (1964-09-21) September 21, 1964 (age 50)
Origin Uruguay
Website Official Site

Jorge Drexler (born Jorge Abner Drexler Prada; September 21, 1964) is a Uruguayan musician, actor. He is a doctor specialized in otolaryngology.

In 2004, Drexler won wide acclaim after becoming the first Uruguayan ever to win an Academy Award. He won for composing the song "Al Otro Lado del Río" from The Motorcycle Diaries.

Early life[edit]

Drexler was born in Montevideo.[1] In 1939 his father, a German Jew, fled to Uruguay with his family at the age of four to escape the Holocaust.[2][3] His family also fled to Bolivia and lived there. At the time only Bolivia among South American countries was widely open to Jewish immigrants. And over six decades later as his gratitude to Bolivia he made a song Bolivia, which is included in Bailar en la cueva.[3] His mother is a Christian of mixed Spanish, French, and Portuguese descent.[2] Drexler was raised Jewish, [2] but does not follow any organized religions.[4]

Like much of his family, he studied medicine and became an otolaryngologist—an ear, nose and throat specialist.[5] Drexler began playing piano at age five, before attending guitar and composition classes.[6] Although he had an interest in music, he became a doctor like both of his parents.[7] He attended medical school in Montevideo.[2] During his time in medical school, Drexler took a break to hitchhike through Brazil.[2]

He also studied music and recorded two albums, which were only released in Uruguay.


Jorge Drexler performing with Tiê at the 2011 Rock in Rio Festival in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

In 1995 he was invited to Madrid by well-known Spanish songwriter Joaquín Sabina, who introduced him to other important Spanish singers. Drexler went to Spain to record the album Vaivén in 1996 with Spanish musicians. Vaivén included some old songs from his previous releases mixed with new compositions. He moved to Spain and recorded another four albums: Llueve (1997), Frontera (1999), Sea (2001) and Eco (2004).

After that, he released 12 Segundos De Oscuridad (Dro Atlántic. 2006), this album contained ten original songs, and two covers: "High & Dry" from British band Radiohead and "Disneylandia" from Brazilian Titãs.

Although he lives most of the year in Spain, his albums were partially recorded in Uruguay with Uruguayan musicians. Juan Campodónico and Carlos Casacuberta, former members of rock band El Peyote Asesino, had produced Drexler's albums from Frontera to 12 Segundos De Oscuridad.

In 2008, he released a double live album, recorded in diverse concerts in Spain: Cara B (Dro Atlántic. 2008), mainly filled with all the unusual songs previously unrealeased.

In March 2010, he released Amar la trama (2010), recorded in just four days, with the musicians playing live on studio.

In 2014 he won Latin Grammy Awards in two categories.

His music is a combination of Uruguayan traditional music (candombe, murga, milonga, tango), bossa nova, pop, jazz and electronic music, which results in very personal compositions with original arrangements. The words also play an important role in his songs. Apart from love, reflections about identity, race and religions are a constant in his work.


Drexler's song "Al otro lado del río" appeared in the internationally acclaimed film "The Motorcycle Diaries" (Spanish title: "Diarios de motocicleta"). Though Drexler himself sang the song on the movie soundtrack, it was performed together by Antonio Banderas and Carlos Santana at the Academy Awards ceremony. Upon his winning the Oscar for Best Original Song, Drexler's "speech" consisted mostly of him singing a portion of the song a cappella.[8]

Personal life[edit]

He was married to singer-songwriter Ana Laan until 2005. His girlfriend is Spanish actress/singer Leonor Watling. She gave birth to their son Luca in January 2009. Watling sings in the band Marlango.

Awards and nominations[edit]


  • La luz que sabe robar (Ayui, 1992)
  • Radar (Ayui, 1994)
  • Vaivén (Virgin, 1996)
  • Llueve (Virgin, 1997)
  • Frontera (Virgin, 1999)
  • Sea (Virgin, 2001)
  • Eco (Dro, 2004)
  • Eco2 (includes 3 bonus tracks + DVD) (Dro, 2005)
  • 12 Segundos de Oscuridad (2006)
  • La Edad del Cielo (iTunes release) (2007)
  • Cara B (2008)
  • Amar la Trama (2010)
  • Bailar en la cueva (Warner, 2014)[3][9]


  1. ^ "Jorge Drexler talks about his album '12 segundos de oscuridad'". Retrieved 2008-06-22. [dead link]
  2. ^ a b c d e Gurza, Agustin (February 27, 2005). "A songwriter's dream has disappointing end". Los Angeles Times. Eddy Hartenstein. Retrieved February 7, 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c "From Alt.Latino, Five Conversations With Latin Music's Finest". 1 August 2014. Retrieved 7 January 2015. 
  4. ^ "Ecos de Drexler" (in Spanish). Montevideo COMM. Desde hace mucho tiempo he perdido mi fé en todas las religiones organizadas. No creo en Dios.Al menos no de la manera en que se lo describe habitualmente. 
  5. ^ Rohter, Larry (2005-07-12). "Latin American Singer's Rainbow Coalition of Identities". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-06-22. 
  6. ^ Bonacich, Drago. "Jorge Drexler - Biography". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved February 7, 2012. 
  7. ^ Gurza, Agustin (March 2, 2005). "Los Angeles Times". Eddy Hartenstein. Retrieved February 7, 2012. 
  8. ^ "Jorge Drexler en la entrega de los Oscar". Retrieved 2012-01-08. 
  9. ^ "The Latin Grammys: Mexican Romance, Uruguayan Mellow And More". 13 November 2014. Retrieved 15 December 2014. 

External links[edit]