Born-January 12, 1970
Zack De La Rocha is the former vocalist of Rage Against the Machine, and is currently the vocalist in the band “One Day as a Lion” with former Mars Volta drummer Jon Theodore.
Rocha’s former band (Rage) is regarded as one of the most influential music groups in recent history. It is possible that Rocha paved the way for today’s nu metal bands that intertwine rock and rap. Rap-core as some call it.
Rocha’s birthplace was in Long Beach, California, and was born of Beto and Olivia De La Rocha. Olivia De La Rocha had earned a PhD in anthropology from the University of California, Irvine. On the other hand, Beto De La Rocha was a Chicano muralist in the political art group Los Four. Zack’s parents split-up when he was only one year old, with Olivia retaining custody, they lived in Irvine, California.
Zack’s father Beto suffered from a nervous breakdown in 1983 when Zack was thirteen years old. After the nervous breakdown Beto than took his religious beliefs to extreme levels. Zack would visit Beto on the weekends and be forced to fast, sit in a room with curtains closed, door locked, and he also had to help his father destroy his old paintings, those paintings in which helped him establish a Chicano identity. Soon, Zack was unable to cope with that rough life-style and went back to living with his mother in Irvine.
The forced lifestyle Beto brought upon Zack would eventually lead to culture shock, and an identity crisis. Soon Zack was alienated from the Chicano community and was an outsider in the California suburbs. In highschool Zack became involved in music such as punk and hardcore which were big at the time, and he played guitar and sang for a band called Hardstance. Zack’s interest in bands like The Sex Pistols, and others alike turned into appreciation of other bands such as Minor Threat and others alike.
Zack would soon form a band called Inside Out, which gained a large amount of followers in Huntington Beach and Irvine, California. They released a single record titled “No Spiritual Surrender on Revelation Records” in 1990 before the band would break up. In Zack's words, Inside Out "about completely detaching ourselves from society to see ourselves as...as spirits, and not bowing down to a system that sees you as just another pebble on a beach. I channeled all my anger out through that band."
Zack’s heritage separated him from all the rich kids that he was surrounded by. He was never as equally deprived as his fellow Chicanos though, but he still felt the same tension and rejection they did. Zack was soon relating to hip-hop groups such as Public Enemy and Run-DMC. After inside out split-up, Zack started to get involved in hip-hop and would freestyle at local bars and clubs. That is where he would meet guitar legend Tom Morello, and Brad Wilk. Zack’s friend Tim Commerford soon joined, and the famous band Rage Against the Machine was formed.
Shortly Rage Against the Machine was playing on the main stage at Lollapalooza II, and was one of the most politically charged bands to ever be publically aired. Rage’s second and third albums peaked at number one, but would not result in the political action that Zack had hoped for. Zack became reckless and took collaborations with groups such as KRS One.
In the year of 2000 and month of October, Zack left Rage due to “creative differences”(it's rumored that Tim Commerford's stunt at the 2000 MTV Video Music Awards where, urged on by Michael Moore, he climbed on one of the fixtures on stage was the catalyst for Zack's decision to leave the band). Now Zacarias De La Rocha is still making music with ex Mars Volta drummer Jon Theodore in a band called “One Day As A Lion”