He is the voice that has achieved recognition interpreting the style of the romantic bolero and having sold more than seven million albums worldwide throughout his musical journey; International recording artist Charlie Zaa after years of absence returns to deliver his brand new studio album, De Bohemia (Of Bohemia) to all his fans.
Ever since Charlie was a young boy he knew that he wanted to be a singer. Influenced by the profession of his father Luis Humberto Sánchez who performed tropical music, Carlos Alberto Sánchez grew up listening to the songs of Groupo Niche, Orquesta Guayacán and Héctor Lavoe. The first time he stepped on stage was in his hometown of Girardot, Colombia, at the tender age of ten. Charlie sang with a group called, Espinal and he asked the leader for permission to sing a song titled “Margarita”. When he finished singing that song nobody wanted to let him leave the stage. He continued to sing other songs and following the performance, the owner of the group went to his home to ask his father for his permission to allow Charlie to join the band, La Gran Escala. His father gave his blessing and the rest is history.
At the age of twelve Charlie left his home for Cali with 60 thousand pesos, that his mother had given him, four changes of clothes and a bible under his arm. Within two months he was already recording with Alma Del Barrio (Soul of the Neighborhood) with whom he recorded two albums. During his time with the group, Jairo Varela took notice of his talent and asked him to join Groupo Niche. He had initially signed a seven year contract with the band but due to his young age, which prevented him from traveling out of the country creating conflicts, he only remained with them for three years.
Three months after leaving Niche he was called by Guayacán, the group which he joined a year later. By this time Charlie was already of age to travel outside the country and this gave way to two years of very successful touring throughout Mexico, Peru, Venezuela, Ecuador, the United States and several European countries.
After recording two albums with Guayacán he decided to leave the group and take his career in another direction. A year and a half later he decided to interpret classic boleros and re-recorded various hit songs by Julio Jaramillo. These romantic songs made up his first solo album, Sentimientos (Feelings) which was released in 1996.
Charlie achieved great success with Sentimientos (Feelings) becoming an international sensation and through his charisma on stage he garnered worldwide recognition. The album reached sales of more than 3.2 million copies in the United States, Puerto Rico and worldwide reaching #1 on Billboard’s Top Latin Albums and Tropical Albums chart.
Charlie obtained the highest recognitions of the Latin recording industry being awarded Latin Billboard Awards, Premio Lo Nuestro (Our Awards), nominations for the Latin GRAMMY® awards, Premio Casandra (Casandra Awards), Gaviotas de Plata (Silver Seagulls), Antorchas de Oro (The Gold Torches) at the Festival Viña del Mar in Chile, Prisma de Diamante (Prism of Diamond) and multiple Gold and Platinum certifications throughout Latin America.
Charlie followed up this success in 1998 with the production, Un Segundo Sentimiento (A Second Feeling) which topped Billboard’s Tropical Albums chart and Ciego de Amor (Blind From Love), in 2000 which reached #2 on Billboard’s Latin Pop Albums chart. The latter production included the collaborations of Emilio Estefan Jr. and the participation of renowned international artist Jon Secada who handled vocal direction and coaching. The song “Por tu Amor” (For Your Love) came from this collaboration and was the theme to the Telenovela (soap opera) of the same name. “Donde Esta El Amor” (Where is the Love) topped Billboard’s Latin Pop Airplay chart becoming one of his signature hits.
In 2002, Charlie released De un solo Sentimiento (Of One Single Feeling), an album that achieved huge sales throughout Latin America and earned him a Latin GRAMMY® nomination and his first #1 single on Billboard’s Hot Latin Songs chart, “Flor Sin Retono”. Charlie performed on some of the most prestigious stages throughout the world, among them, Teatro Bellas Artes de Puerto Rico (Fine Arts Theater of Puerto Rico), Universal Amphitheater de Los Ángeles (Gibson Amphitheater), Quinta Vergara (The Fifth Vergara) in Viña del Mar, Chile; Festival de la Bahía (Festival of the Bay) in Argentina, and at New York’s Madison Square Garden, Radio City Music Hall and the Festival of Flushing Park with the presence of more than one hundred thousand fans.
Following his huge success and stardom Charlie decided to leave the spotlight to dedicate time to his family and concentrate on his spirituality. After several years he was ready to return to his fan base and worked tirelessly for six months with pure emotion on a musical production that managed to capture the same feelings and sentiments as his debut album.
After fifteen years of hard work, extensive touring, learning about different cultures and establishing his musical career, this young and modern bolerista, has sold more than seven million albums worldwide and is ready for the next chapter.
Having been out of the music industry for more than four years, Charlie decided to return to the stage and his public to present De Bohemia (Of Bohemia), a new album in which Charlie Zaa one again assembles the team that created and produced his 1996 breakout album Sentimientos (Feelings), the teamwork of brothers Jorge and Sady Ramirez.
Charlie hopes to continue his success with the same formula that made him a superstar. He has gone back to his bolero roots, which mirror the current trend most radio stations are supporting and programming. His interpretation of well know hits from Orlando Contreras, which the album contains, in Charlie’s signature style brings familiarity to programmers and listeners alike.
Radio has begun to support first single, “En un Beso la Vida”, in anticipation to the September 6th release of the album. 2011 is the year of the return of Charlie Zaa, one of the biggest international stars to come out of Colombia.