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Definition of Parcero

The word parcero refers to a friend or companion from the same regional area with whom one has a lot of trust.


  1. Friend, pana
  2. Paisano
  3. Companion, accomplice


The word parcero has its origin in “parceiro” which in Portuguese has the meaning of accomplice friend, a peer. Some linguistic research indicates that this term was brought to Medellín in the 1980s.

It seems that many young people from popular sectors in Medellín and the metropolitan area went to work in the kitchens of drug traffickers on the border between Colombia and Brazil. Here they learned the word and then Spanishized it: “parceiro” became “parcero”.

Parce is the shortening of parcero, which basically means the same thing: friend, in Colombian Spanish. This word, along with many of its derivatives, was coined and came to play a prominent role in the local language, especially in the Antioquia region of northern Colombia.

Some people from different social strata, associate the word parcero with crime, and a kind of danger that is attributed to those who use it, perhaps for this reason some urban artists from Colombia use it in their lyrics.


The song “la plata” by Colombian singer Juanes, which a few days after its release had already garnered more than 9 million views on YouTube, begins: “Parce, come on, I tell you one thing brother, see. This is a vallenato Ay, hombe”.

Parcero is the most commonly used word among young people in Colombia.

Clearly it is a relatively young word in the Colombian vocabulary, not only because of its easy diffusion but also because of its transcendence of frontiers. As an example, there is Colombian reggaeton singer J Balvin who refers to fellow Canadian Justin Bieber as his “parce” in a video that went viral in 2018.