Wilmer Alicea (Baby Rasta) (born October 11, 1976) and Samuel Gerena (Gringo) (born December 31, 1978), respectively are a reggaeton duo from Puerto Rico, famous for their track El Carnaval (The Carnival). They were originally called "Eazy Boyz". After changing their names they released three albums, New Prophecy in 1998, Fire Live in 2003 and Sentenciados in 2004. Sentenciados came out in both parental advisory and edited versions, and a "platinum version", including a bonus DVD, was released in 2005. Even though their first album came out in 1998, they started recording together in an album produced by DJ Negro, The Noise: Underground.
Wilmer Alicea was born on October 11, 1976 and Samuel Gerena was born July 3, 1978 in Hato Rey Puerto Rico. At the age of 12 and 10 they started their career in 1988, and along with DJ Playero and Vico C, were one of the first reggaeton artists. Even so, they failed to get much recognition. By the age of 16 and 14 (1992) reggaeton was extremely popular among the underground scene. Due to its obscene and vulgar lyrics, the Puerto Rican government tried to eliminate it completely. Baby Rasta & Gringo, along with Tempo, responded by producing songs aimed at the government.
In 1998 they released their first album, titled New Prophecy. With the arrival of Héctor y Tito, who were quickly becoming reggaeton's greatest talent, were one of among others their biggest competition.
After only appearing on several compilation albums, they released their second album, Fire Live in 2003. It sold better than their previous album. Baby Rasta & Gringo were quickly garnering enemies, due to the term tirarea, where artist attack/Diss other artist in lyrics. The famous tireara was with the duo Lito & Polaco and Pina Records. Even after all this, they were the most popular underground duo, with sold-out concerts in dance halls and such. They were also getting individual attention, with Baby Rasta being noted for his skills at writing romantic lyrics and Gringo for his rapping abilities.
With reggaeton finally getting worldwide recognition, and other duo's (H&T, Karel y Voltio, among others) on the verge of separating, they decided to try once more, and released Sentenciados in 2004. This was the break they had been awaiting for so long. Sentenciados was, and still is, regarded as one of the greatest reggaeton albums of all time. Featuring many hits, it included El Carnaval, the duo's biggest hit, and one of the most popular dancehall songs in Puerto Rico. They also made big hits with Cheka. Making songs together became a hit for Baby Rasta and Gringo.
In 2007, Baby Rasta & Gringo reunite for the first time since their break up. And in 2008, Baby Rasta & Gringo release their newest CD 'The Comeback' and has received positive reviews since their return.
Separation and solo careers:
They separated in December, 2004 because of problems with their record producer, who Gringo says paid more attention to Baby Rasta alone, instead of to them both as a group. It has been alleged that they have an ongoing beef, with people alleging that Baby Rasta has dissed his former partner in live shows.
Baby Rasta has achieved success and fame, mostly due to his appearing on many artist's albums and landing a hit with his only Billboard Top 100 hit so far, Hay de Mí, with producer Noriega.He also appears in Somos de Calle (Remix) with Daddy Yankee, Arcangel & De La Ghetto, Guelo Star, MC Ceja, Voltio, Ñejo, Chyno Nyno, and Cosculluela
Gringo's solo album El Independiente was released in March 2007. Gringo also released "Reggaeton Con Navidad" on December 13, 2005. It featured Bebe, Machito, Klasico, and many others.
In 2006 Baby Rasta released his first solo album "La Última Risa", which due to poor promotion did not reach incredible heights in terms of sales. However, many underground fans, most who bootlegged the album, labeled it as the best reggaeton album of the year. Later in 2006, Baby Rasta released his single "Toma Nena". Gringo released his solo album "El Independiente" in 2007. Baby Rasta has a new record of his own called Illegal Life Records.
In late 2007, Baby Rasta & Gringo reunited in the Luny tunes mas flow concert, where Gringo declared that they really are "El Duo De Historia" a title that Wisin y Yandel have been calling themselves. This has ignited an old beef (tiradera) between the two duos. The tiradera which started back when Wisin y Yandel collaborated with Tito y Hector in a tiraera for Baby Rasta & Gringo in La Misión 2. Baby Rasta & Gringo will release their new album The Comeback Back To Business November 23 under Eme Music. It will contain 15 tracks and as promotion they have "Los Lobos" and "tiemblo" with production from Jumbo, Dj Eric, Noriega and more. For 2009 we expect Romances De Ruido 3 which will feature Baby Rasta & Gringo, Joan y Oneil, Randy, Tito and many more, Por Simpre Yo, Baby Rasta's last solo album, was an obligation under his joint venture with Universal Music Latino.
The duo released "Dejame Conocerte" the first single from their new album. This song also officially marked their comeback as a duo.
November 23, the most awaited album of 2008, Baby Rasta & Gringo The come Back back To Business
Involved in problems:
Baby Rasta & Gringo have been involved in lyrical wars, or tiraera with many reggaeton artists. They have faced Lito & Polaco, Hector & Tito, MC Ceja, Don Omar, Ivy Queen and many more.
On the Somos de Calle (Remix) a Dominican hip hop artist named Vakero criticized Baby Rasta because of the song have strong racism against the Dominican workforce who live in New York saying that Dominicans have no class. Rasta has gone on Dominican radio to say that what he said was misunderstood and that he does not apologize because he did not disrespect Dominicans, two different words that obviously do not mean the same. Baby Rasta & Gringo also said they loved their Dominican followers and they were really pleased with how Dominicans always had received them, Baby Rasta & Gringo are currently feuding with reggaeton duo Wisin & Yandel dissing them with the track "Se Mueren" from their new album. Baby Rasta & Gringo have recently released songs at the duo called "Dime Cuando & Donde" (Tell me When and Where") is a very strong song aimed at them. Wisin has said on a diss song aim at them that he is "El Lobo" a name that is tied to a gang organization which Baby Rasta & Gringo promote.
Wilmer Alicea (Baby Rasta) was at the Jardines de Country Club recording studio working on a new album when he and two other men were shot by unidentified gunmen before dawn. Police said the shooters were inside a vehicle and waited for the trio to step outside of the studio before opening fire with a hail of bullets. Authorities recovered more than 100 bullet casings of various caliber at the scene.