If Gabriel “Gabo” Lugo has found a musical challenge he hasn’t overcome, it’s what to call himself. “(I’m a) programmer, engineer, mixer, remixer and musician.” It’s still an understatement. Born in Puerto Rico and raised in Old San Juan, the humble Gabo fails to lead with the fact that he received a Grammy nomination for production work on Tego Calderon’s “Ni Fu Ni Fa” from the reggaeton star’s 2008 album “El Abayarde Contra-Ataca”. While Lugo may claim that his main axe is actually the computer, those who check out his deft conga playing might think otherwise.
Still in his early 20’s Lugo’s talent, paired with a hunger to learn new things and to innovate, has him poised to fulfill the promise of his musical upbringing. Raised by a father who was both architect and a ballet dancer, and a mother who was a sound engineer, Lugo straddled that line between performance and technology from an early age, when he first discovered headphones at the age of 9 “Music become intimate… i was addicted to sounds from then" While Gabo’s architect and dancer father might have influenced his ability to embrace multiple roles as a musician & producer, clearly his sound engineer mother made a strong impression on his early education, as he spent nearly everyday after school in the studio along the likes of Paoli Mejia, Luis Raul Romero and Tito de Gracia, as well as many others.
While those formative experiences in Old San Juan might have been schooling enough for some, Gabo’s thirst for knowledge led him to Berklee College of Music, where he continues work towards a degree in Sound Design between production gigs and performances such as the prestigious Heineken Jazz Festival and the San Francisco Jazz Festival, rounded out by live and recording work with such Afro-Caribbean luminaries as Chucho Valdés, Plena Libre and Juan Luis Guerra. However, despite his solid footing in percussion and folkloric music, it’s clear that Gabo’s clear comfort and fascination with technology is going to guide his journey.
“In the future I want to be more involved in composing and producing records for and with other people and focus on finding new ways to deliver music. I just heard Bjork talking about CDs and how they are out-dated if you think how long music has been in the world and how long we have had CDs, we have to move on!”
Gabo is clearly moving on already; it’s just a matter of when the rest of the world catches up with him.
Experience & Education
Producer, Mixer for Gabo Lugo Sound DesignJuly 2002 to Present (about 16 years)
Music media & post-production for film
Music Technology tutor for Boston Arts AcademyJanuary 2009 to January 2010 (about a year)
asistant engineer for Sol Studios San Juan , PRNovember 2004 to January 2008 (over 3 years)
Global Studies in International Music Business Program at Berklee Valencia2012 to 2013 (1 years)
BA in Electronic production and design at Berklee2008 to 2011 (3 years)