Rivero was born in Cordoba, Argentina. He began his singing career as a professional choral singer. He sang 12 years with the “Coro Polifonico de Cordoba”, which he performed classical repertoire. Rivero was part of different vocal groups, after he continued his career as a soloist. He was invited to sing at the Argentine and Brazilian television, performed for the radio, in theaters and at festivals. He devoted himself to tango songs. He met Astor Piazzolla in his house in Paris and sang to him. Piazzolla was very impressed by his warm and passionate voice and urged him to sing a wider (folk) repertoire. Also met with Mercedes Sosa gave him new inspiration. He is now generally regarded as a great tango expert and one of the top contemporary tango singers. He called the Argentine Jaques Brel. José Rivero now lives in Amsterdam.
He was part of Tango Dorado performing with Jennie Arean, Petra Berger, the Rosenberg Trio, Gypsy Boys and Tangata and with his own sextet José Rivero. Rivero’s current repertoire consists mainly of works of his countrymen Gardel, Piazzolla, Blazquez and of course the repertoire of Mercedez Sosa.en of Jobim and Ari Barroso from Brazil, the Cubans Silvio Rodriguez and Pablo Milanes and the Chilean Violeta Parra.