Singer, songwriter, percussionist and bandleader, Carlos Elizalde has developed a solid reputation as one of San Francisco’s top front men, leading one of the brightest and energetic groups to come out of the Bay Area club scene with Ruckatan. Carlos’ dynamic style combines elements of Latin, Rock, Soul, Reggae and World music.
His musician father, who opened up his musical soul to many creative styles, heavily shaped Carlos. He was also influenced by many of the best percussionists on the West Coast including Armando Peraza, Pete Escovedo, Mingo Lewis, Sheila E., Karl Perrazo, Raul Rekow, Juan Escovedo, Mio Flores, Eric Engstrom, Frankie Parise, Derek Rolando and many more.
Being of Basque, Ecuadorian and Mexican heritage, he was immersed in a melting pot of incredible world music. From a very early age, his home was filled with music from England, Italy, Spain, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Brazil. With no formal music training, Carlos’ success can be attributed to his work ethic, desire to learn and the generosity of his extraordinary influences.
Carlos and his band have shared stages with Latin Rock royalty including Santana, Malo, Tierra, El Chicano, Joe Bataan, Los Lonely Boys, WAR among many others. In 2011, Carlos was invited to tour with the nationally recognized Santana tribute band, Caravanserai, this gave him the opportunity to showcase his percussion prowess and vocal talents.