Gerardo performing at Eleva, a conference founded by Jeff Tolle.
|Birth name||Gerardo Mejía|
|Born||April 16, 1965|
|Occupation(s)||Rapper, singer, actor|
|Labels||Interscope Records (1990–present)|
Randy's Records (1991–1992)
Gerardo Mejía (born April 16, 1965), better known by his mononym Gerardo, is an Ecuadorian-American rapper, singer and actor who later became a recording industry executive, and more recently a pastor. Born in Guayaquil, Ecuador, he moved with his family to Glendale, California, when he was 12 years old.
Based in Los Angeles, California, Gerardo became known for his bandana, skintight jeans, locking, and shirtless torso. He sometimes refers to himself as the "Latin Elvis", the "Latin Frank Sinatra" or the Latin "Tony Zuzio".
Gerardo's first major appearance in show business was as Ricky in the 1987 feature film Can't Buy Me Love. He was later cast as the character Bird in the 1988 film Colors, about South Central Los Angeles gang violence. This was also the first time his dance skills were showcased, in one of the party scenes; however, he did not sing at any point in the film.
His hit single "Rico Suave" appeared on his 1991 debut album, Mo' Ritmo. The album peaked at #36 on the Billboard 200 chart in June 1991; the single had peaked at #7 in April. This song, as well as some others of Gerardo's, include verses with lines in both English and Spanish. Although his following single "We Want the Funk" (a semi-remake of Parliament's "Give Up the Funk") peaked at #16, the popularity of "Rico Suave" has made Gerardo known as a one-hit wonder via sources including MTV, VH1, Synthesis and even Gerardo himself.
Now an A&R executive at Interscope Records, Gerardo was responsible for bringing Enrique Iglesias to the attention of Interscope Label Executives in early 1999. He also signed rapper Bubba Sparxxx. More recently, in a 2013 appearance on Katie Couric's show Katie, Gerardo discussed his newest life focus as a Christian youth pastor. He was recently ordained as a Pastor at Praise Chapel in Kansas City. He now pastors a church House of Grace in Ashland, KY. His daughter is Miss California USA 2016 Nadia Mejia.
|Year||Album details||Chart Positions|
|2001||Gerardo: Fame, Sex y Dinero
|"—" denotes the album failed to chart or not released|
- "Rico Suave" (1991; #7 US Billboard Hot 100)
- "We Want the Funk" (1991; #16 US Billboard Hot 100)
- "When the Lights Go Out" (1991; #98 US Billboard Hot 100)
- "Latin Till I Die (Oye Como Va)" (1991)
- "Love" (1992)
- "Maria Elisa" (1994)
- "Ae-Ah" (The Outhere Brothers featuring Ricardo) (1998)
- "Americana" (2004)
|1987||Can't Buy Me Love||Ricky|
|1988||Supercarrier||Luis Cruz||TV series|
|1994||A Million to Juan||Flaco|
|Somebody to Love||Armando|
|2003||Pauly Shore Is Dead||Rico Suave|
|Mi Casa, Su Casa||Miguel Sanchez||this film has the alternate title of Loco Love.|
|2014||Suave Says||Himself||TV series|
- Billboard.com - Biography - Gerardo. Retrieved September 22, 2008.
- Kaufman, Gil (2002-05-22). "Gerardo: Back And 'Still Rico' - News Story | Music, Celebrity, Artist News | MTV News". Mtv.com. Retrieved 2010-10-11.
- Gerardo Mejía on IMDb
- Billboard.com - Artist Chart History - Gerardo. Retrieved 15 November 2012.
- Gerardo: Back And 'Still Rico' - News Story | Music, Celebrity, Artist News | MTV News. Retrieved September 28, 2008.
- Synthesis : Music : Gerardo : King Mac Daddy : an Interview with Rico Suave. Archived 2008-10-06 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved September 28, 2008.
- "Andy Kotz - Producer". AKMusic Productions. Archived from the original on 2011-07-07. Retrieved 2010-10-11.