José-Luis Orozco is a bilingual educator, children’s author, and recording artist who has dedicated his life to creating quality bilingual music, books, and videos for children. He encourages learning of the Spanish language and promotes Latin American culture through his art. His rich catalog includes 15 CDs, a DVD, and 3 award-winning songbooks. Each year, he travels throughout the United States sharing his music through language arts workshops for educators and librarians, concerts for children and families and inspirational programs for high school students.
The motivation for his long and fruitful career began during his early years. Born in Mexico City, José-Luis learned many songs from his paternal grandmother. At age eight, he became a member of the Mexico City Boys’ Choir, and at ten was accepted into the touring choir. He traveled the world for three years, visiting 32 countries in Europe, the Caribbean, Central and South America. It was from his tour that he gained the cultural knowledge he now shares with children through his books and recordings. At age 19, José-Luis moved to California in search of the American dream. He went to college and earned his Bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley, and a Master’s degree in Multicultural Education from the University of San Francisco.
After completing his Master’s program, José-Luis dedicated himself to what he truly enjoys — singing and writing for children. Throughout the years, he has tirelessly researched and recorded 13 volumes of the Lírica Infantil series (Latin American Children’s Music). He has also written three successful award-winning bilingual books, De Colores (Dutton 1994), Diez Deditos (Ten Little Fingers) (Dutton 1997), and Fiestas(Dutton 2002), that present an extraordinary collection songs, rhymes, tongue twisters, lullabies, and games from various Spanish-speaking countries. In 2003, José-Luis released an exciting DVD titled Cantamos y Aprendemos con José-Luis Orozco (Singing and Learning with José-Luis Orozco), filled with live action, animation, and Latino flavor that motivates children to learn about the Spanish language and the rich tradition of Latin American children’s music. The Caramba Kids songs teach the alphabet, counting, greetings, colors, and more. In 2012, José-Luis released the Caramba Kids album, a collection of 6 educational songs recorded in Spanish and in English.
José-Luis Orozco’s 2009 book release Rin, Rin, Rin, Do, Re, Mi, richly illustrated by Caldecott Medal winner, David Diaz, is a delightfully, lyrical bilingual (English and Spanish) children’s book which shows how everyday family activities such as cooking, singing, reading and storytelling foster essential early literacy skills including letter recognition and language development. Rin, Rin, Rin, Do, Re, Mi is a book in a series published and distributed by Scholastic’s Latino initiative Lee y Serás (Read and You Will Be), which was created to improve the reading and literacy development of Latino children. The Rin, Rin, Rin/Do, Re, Mi single was produced by GRAMMY® award-winning producer KC Porter.
Favorite Spanish Songs for Kids with José-Luis Orozco was released spring 2013 in partnership with the Duck Duck Moose label, creator of award-winning educational mobile apps and digital downloads for children. Favorite Spanish Songs for Kids with José-Luis Orozco features some of the most beloved and popular children’s songs, like “The Wheels on the Bus,” and “Good Morning” in Spanish. During fall of 2015 Come Bien, a collection of songs about healthy eating and developed with Smithsonian Folkways was released.
Throughout the years José-Luis has been honored to receive awards and recognition from organizations. In 2003 and 2005 he was invited to participate in the National Book Festival organized by the Library of Congress and hosted by First Lady, Laura Bush. During the festivities in 2003, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus in Washington, D.C. honored Mr. Orozco. In the spring of 2009, José-Luis received recognition and was honored by the Association of Bilingual Directors affiliated with the Los Angeles County Office of Education (LACOE). He received the 2011 Latino Spirit Award presented by the California Latino Legislative Caucus, and the Lifetime Achievement in the Arts Award presented to him by the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF). In 2015 he received the Magic Penny Award for Lifetime Achievement in Children’s Music by the Children’s Music Network.
José-Luis Orozco is an acknowledged expert in children’s music and is a featured speaker and presenter at educational conferences and seminars for teachers, parents, librarians and childcare providers who seek to use music as an important learning tool in multicultural classrooms. He continues to perform for children throughout the country and world at concert halls, libraries, bookstores and schools.
José-Luis Orozco is the father of four and grandfather to two children. He currently lives in Los Angeles, California.