Jan Carlo DeFan

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Jan Carlo
Birth name Jan Carlo DeFan
Born (1977-12-26) December 26, 1977 (age 39)
Origin Flag of Mexico.svg Guadalajara, Jalisco,
Genres Alternative rock
Occupation(s) Musician
Recording artist
Record producer
Record Label Executive
Instruments Guitar
Years active 1993–present
Labels Arista Records (2000–2002)
Silverlight Records (2003–2005)
Sony Music(2003–2005)
Festival Mushroom(2003–2005)
Abbywho Records (2005–present)
Website www.elan-online.com
Notable instruments
El Vikingo Special 001

Jan Carlo DeFan Kristal (born December 26, 1977 in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico) is the lead guitarist in ELAN, a small band based out of México, but residing in the US. . ELAN has sold 1.7 million albums worldwide and has recorded 6 albums to date.

Early career in music[edit]

Jan Carlo began to play the guitar at age 5 and started recording at age 10 in a makeshift studio he constructed with help from his father, made from old cassette and 1/4 inch "reel to reel" tape machines.

Jan Carlo grew up listening to his parents vinyl collection and then, trying to make records that sounded like them. At sixteen he began working as a record company scout and opened up his first production and management company with his younger sister Elán.

At 17, he became an A&R scout for Warner Bros. Records Mexico, becoming the youngest A&R executive in company's history[citation needed].

Jan Carlo became an A&R executive at Warner Bros. Records, working closely with a number of major Latin performers, including Café Tacuba, Francisco Céspedes and El Tri to mention a few[citation needed].

At age 21 after having one of the most successful years in Warner Bros. Records Mexico's sales history, Jan Carlo decided to move on and concentrate on ELAN (the band he started with his sister).

Jan Carlo has produced many world class musicians and engineers like Slash (Guns N' Roses, Velvet Revolver), Jim Keltner, Leland Sklar, Mark Howard, Fabrizio Grossi), Jeff "The Pirate" Poe), Brian Paulson (Beck) as well as having worked alongside legendary A&R's and producers like Richard Sweret, Josh Sarubin, Pete Gambarg) and Mark Kamins to name a few[citation needed].


With almost 1.7 million units sold, ELAN is the most successful independent Latin American band from Mexico[citation needed].

ELAN is made up of, lead vocalist and keyboard player Elan (Jan Carlo's younger sister and co-producer, also the sole composer of the band's work) and younger cousin and drummer Michel "Cheech" Bitar DeFan.

With four albums and 12 music videos to date, the band continues to record and tour.

In 2008, ELAN made the first tour in Mexico with over 18 concerts nationwide.

2003–2005 Street Child[edit]

Street Child, was the first album by the Mexican band, sung completely in the English language. Though it was released in 2003, the band had been at work on this album for almost 6 years by the time of its release.

On June 13, 2003, Elan's first single "Midnight" was released in Mexico on their own label, Silverlight Records (licensed through Sony Music Mexico).

"Midnight" reached No. 1 in airplay in most Mexican territories for ten weeks[citation needed]. "Midnight" climbed the "Pepsi Chart" to #12. On MTV Latin America, Elan's video went to the Top 10 Most Wanted and went to the Top 10 on the Top 20 Countdown. On Australian radio, it was the second most added song in its first week (second only to Eminem. The song reached number seven on the charts. "Midnight" reached the top ten across the boards (all radio formats) on airplay in the country. In MTV Australia it reached the Top Ten most requested and also the No. 10 on the "Top 30 Countdown"[citation needed].

The band released the album in Mexico first and Australia. ELAN performed at award shows and special events such as Mexico's National Academy of Music's Oye Awards, the Eres Magazine 15 Year Anniversary Celebration and the Sanborn's 100th Anniversary Celebration. Elan traveled throughout Mexico, performing in San Luis Potosí, Guadalajara, Monterrey, Mexico City, Cuernavaca and Torreón on what became known as the Street Child Tour.

ELAN also traveled to Mexico, to play for free, at schools, to promote music education. It was the first of its kind in Mexico.

Elan also performed at the pre-show of the MTV Video Music Awards Latin America 2003 in Miami, Florida. In Australia, ELAN performed on The Panel, MTV Australia and Channel V to name a few. The band also performed two exclusive shows at "Boutique" in Melbourne and "The Basement" in Sydney.

2005–2007 London Express[edit]

Due to the grueling schedules and their charitable work with the Abbywho Foundation, the band decided to take a break before returning to the studio to record their second album.

"After returning from a promo tour in Australia and several in Mexico... filming 5 videos and playing award shows, and touring and playing everywhere we realized that life really is short. We had been going nonstop since my sister was 16 and it was time for a break. We needed some rest and not only to be best friends but brother and sister, son and daughter too."

Together, Elan took a year to record the long awaited followup to their Street Child album. The line-up consisted of drummer Michel Bitar and Jan Carlo on guitar, Elán plays piano and keyboards on the record and for the first time rhythm guitarist Jonathan Fraeulin. Titled London Express, the album contained thirteen new tracks. London Express found its roots in the music of The Beatles, which everybody in the world described as "the only band that really changed everything". ELAN has adopted rhythmic patterns and textures and recording techniques from the British Invasion of the 1960s and crafted their own tribute to British rock, yet stamped with their own unique signature.

"Be Free" was the first single from ELAN's London Express album. The video for the "Be Free" single was directed by renowned director, animator and painter Chris Roth and was in high rotation in Latin America's largest Music Video Networks. "This Fool's Life" was the second single released. The video for "This Fool's Life" was also shown on Video Networks like Telehit which is one of the largest music television networks in Latin America, broadcasting throughout Mexico, Central & South America, with a record breaking 12 weeks in the No. 1 position on the charts.

In Australia, ELAN's "This Fool's Life" video debuted in the number one position in video streaming with over 100,000 streams for its first week in Australias' "Undercover", the most important music site in Australia. "This Fool's Life" had almost twice the amount of views in its debut week than all other videos. A third single "Whatever it Takes" was released on November 2006.

2007–2008 What Can Be Done At This Point[edit]

On May 8, 2007 Elan released their third album What Can Be Done At This Point.

The album consisted of 10 new original tracks and includes the track "What Can Be Done At This Point", song that gives the name to the album and that offers a posthumous tribute to the crew of the space shuttle Challenger. The track contains original audio of the transmission between the Challenger and mission control of the day of the unforgettable tragedy. The rights to this audio clip were granted by NASA.

The first single from What Can Be Done At This Point was titled "Don't Want You In". The video for "Don't Want You In" jumped straight to the Top 10 charts on video networks like Telehit. It was directed by Gulliver Parascandolo who also directed the videos for "This Fool's Life" and "Whatever It Takes".

On September 10, 2007 ELAN was awarded an Independent Diamond Record Award for the certified sale of 1.5 million copies of their music.

2008 Shine[edit]

On March 10, 2008 ELAN released their fourth album titled Shine.

2009 Lost and Found[edit]

On March 2009 ELAN relesased their fifth album titled Lost and Found, a purely experimental rock record. The band decided to change their usual way to compose and try a different sound.

2011 Regular Weird People[edit]

Regular Weird People is the sixth record of the band, released on April 2011

The recording sessions for Regular Weird People were done in 3 days and is an album that ELAN recorded completely live in November 2010. Produced by Jan Carlo DeFan with the collaboration of Rafa Sardina as recording engineer and co-producer (Grammy Award winner and renowned for his work with artist such as Stevie Wonder, Macy Gray) mixed by Michael Brauer, who besides having won the Grammy Award on many occasions has been internationally acclaimed for his work with The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Paul McCartney.

Closing the chapter on this list of great personalities that worked on the album is Mr. Doug Sax, who is one of rock's most legendary mastering engineers having worked on all of Pink Floyd's albums as well as having worked with The Who, The Eagles, The Rolling Stones, Jackson Browne, Ray Charles, Rod Stewart just to name a few.


From 2003 to 2011

Street Child Midnight
They Came From the City
Street Child
London Express Be Free
This Fool's Life
Whatever It Takes
What Can Be Done
at This Point
Don't Want You in
Made Myself Invisible
This Time Around
Shine Shine
Lost & Found Lost & Found
Keep Me Up Late
Recuerdos y Tequila Al Lado del Camino
Regular Weird People More Than Her

Independent music[edit]

Jan Carlo and Elan co-founded Silverlight Records (now Abbywho, Inc) with the intention of creating a safe house, for talents like Elán. "When Elán and I opened our first management and production company, we wanted to let an artist be an artist, instead of trying to 'mold' or 'make' them into one. We would try to help them be the best that they could be."

External links[edit]