Discovered and signed at age 16 by music impresario Rick Rubin, Derek Barbosa (known as rapper Chino XL and often referred to as "the Lyrical Messiah") was born in New Jersey to a Puerto Rican father and a Black mother. After releasing his debut album "Here To Save You All" (with chart topping singles and top rated videos aired on MTV), he took a decidedly different journey in making his follow up and subsequently parted ways with Rubin's American Recordings label to sign to Warner Bros. Records. After Prince's public legal battle and departure from WB, the A&R saw a shift in personnel and Chino realized he, too needed a new home for his music. The long awaited follow up "I Told You So" was released independently and become an instant classic, despite its release date of September 11, 2001-the day of the attack and destruction of Manhattan's World Trade Center).
Barbosa then turned his sights and creative inspiration to acting. Over the next 4 years, he would appear in film roles as varied as direct-to-video fiascos to working with director Rob Reiner in a lead opposite Kate Hudson and Luke Wilson in "Alex & Emma". Along the way came comedic improv and dramatic guest stars on network TV.
Returning to his music roots, Chino and his manager, Stacey Castro worked for two years to create his third and longest awaited release, "Poison Pen", which followed the cult status of his previous two records (copies of 1996's "Here To Save You All" still sell to this day). He has toured and collaborated with artists from Alanis Morissette to Pitbull and Faith Hill to Snoop Dog. He is now signed to Universal Music with his next release due in Spring 2008.
He is amember of MENSA and his uncle is funk maestro Bernie Worrell.
Frequently listed among the top-five hip-hop lyricists of all time.
His mother is African-American; his father, with whom he is estranged, is Puerto Rican.
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