Gabriel was born in Lomé, Togo and had his ears dipped in salsa music by his father, whose musical tastes ran from Zaire to Cuba, Puerto Rico, New York and Haiti, in the music of Johnny Pacheco, Monguito and Labah Sosseh, among others.
In the early 1980s, Gabriel moved to Paris where he began amassing a big collection of funk and soul, until he re-discovered salsa in the 1990s. This is when he started passionately building his impressive collection of salsa records, going to local music stores and buying the CDs that no one else would, or travelling the world to collect the rarest vinyl records – a passion which soon transformed him into one of Europeâ€™s most knowledgeable aficionados of latin music.
Although he still remains faithful to his first crush, la salsa romántica, DJ Gabriel cites as his all-time favourites such artists as Yambu, Orquesta Cimarron, Fonzi Cruz, Bobby Valentin, Willie Rosario, Impacto Crea, Sonora Ponceña, El Gran Combo, Carlos Barberia, Orquesta Dee Jay. When asked if there is an album or an artist that he could hear every day, he names Noé Matos, Louie Lopez y su Orquesta, Joe Andino, Super Combo Uno as the three that he cannot live without.
Because what he enjoys most is passing down the richness of such heritage, Gabriel has been sharing it for years with salseros around the world, Dj-ing at international events in Dubai, New York, Moscou, Monaco, Berlin, London, Los Angeles, Genevaâ€¦
DJ Gabriel now hosts, among others, a monthly party at Parisâ€™s La Scala, while he holds his weekly residency at Oâ€™Sullivans, where he keeps digging out the very best of the golden years of salsa music, thus fulfilling his own wish : "my hope is that salsa continues, that people keep sharing this music, this culture, that people keep sharing. For me, that's what salsa is all about.