Havana-born Qbanito channeled elements of hip-hop, French pop, and traditional Middle Eastern music to create a uniquely multicultural interpretation of contemporary Latin R&B. Born Neiver Alberto Alvarez in 1979, he spent the majority of his adolescence in Cuba, as a teen becoming obsessed with American rap. At 17, he and his sister relocated to Montreal to reunite with their father, and the myriad new musical influences at his disposal profoundly shaped his burgeoning Cuban rap sensibilities. After a tenure with the group Cuban Convoy, in early 2005 Qbanito mounted a solo career, making plans to relocate to Miami before a Montreal producer passed his demo tape along to Universal Music France, which quickly extended a contract offer. Qbanito issued his debut LP, Partir, in early 2006. A Spanish-language release, Adivina Quien Llegó, arrived at U.S. retail later that year.