Unlike many of the genre’s rappers, Sech composes his music on guitar or piano, then writes the optimistic wordplay that he sings in a warm, soulful tenor -- all evidence of urban’s move toward a more R&B-driven future, best heard on his “X Ti” or “Boomerang.” He sees where the urbano landscape is heading and is capitalizing on it, which is exactly why reggaeton’s top tier has sought him out: Sech has collaborated on recent tracks with Maluma and Ozuna.
Born Carlos Isaías Morales Williams, the 25-year-old singer-rapper grew up in a household that prioritized music. As the son of two pastors, Sech regularly sang in the church choir as a child, and at home, he would jam with his brothers, all of whom are musicians as well. But Sech was always most interested in reggae en español. The genre was born in Panama in the late 1960s and ’70s, after descendents of Jamaican laborers who constructed the Panama Railroad brought reggae, and later dancehall, to Central America. By the late ’90s, when Sech was growing up, “Reggae en español and reggaeton was heard everywhere,” he recalls. “That is something that stays with you forever.”
He cites El General and Nando Boom, both of whom are widely considered forefathers of reggaeton, as early inspirations. “El General was a pioneer,” says Sech, “and one of the first to make reggae en español. He had a big impact on me. There weren’t a lot of artists coming from my country, and when he [found success], there was real hope that you can make it out.”
Motivated to do just that, Sech co-founded the reggae en español duo El Combo de Oro as a teenager. In 2016, he started uploading tracks online, eventually recording and posting solo material, too. In December 2017, he released a single, the tender urbano track “Miss Lonely,” produced by Miami-via-Panama hitmaker Dímelo Flow. A day later, he released his first-ever EP, The Sensation Mixtape.
Both caught the attention of independent urbano label Rich Music, which signed Sech to a recording contract in 2018; soon after, the label signed a distribution deal with Universal Music Publishing Group. Sueños, which includes a Dímelo Flow remix of “Miss Lonely,” is now Latin Grammy-nominated for best urban music album, up against Bad Bunny’s X 100PRE.
Sech himself may not be far from the kind of global stardom that Bad Bunny has reached. In August, Sech hit No. 4 on the Emerging Artists chart, and he is currently credited on four hits on the Hot Latin Songs list. As he continues to cross over into the U.S. mainstream, he says he hopes his career follows a similar trajectory as Daddy Yankee’s. “In the future, I see myself like him,” says Sech, as an artist “who has accomplished so many things.”