Selena Quintanilla

Biography of Selena Quintanilla

Selena Quintanilla Biography

Selena Quintanilla Pérez was an American singer. Her music used to have a Texan rhythm and it was quite successful. She was born on April 16 of 1971 in Lake Jackson, Texas. Although she was born in the United States and her first language was English, she always sang in Spanish.

Selena grew up in a loving and happy family, with Hispanic origin. Selena’s father, Abraham Quintanilla, was also a musician, although he did not have as much recognition as his daughter. When Selena’s family realized that how talented she was, they did everything possible so that she would take advantage and develop her gifts.

Once her family discovered how gifted was her, Selena began to perform at her father’s restaurant with the support of her brothers. The group she formed with her brothers was known as Selena and the Dinos. The children reached recognition after they recorded their first single in 1984, called My first recordings.

After the release of their album, they continued participating in different shows and performing in many places. This is how 1989 arrives and with it their great opportunity. Behar, the president of the newly founded record company, EMI, goes out looking for new talent to incorporate into his company and observes them in one of his presentations. José Behar sees the talent and potential of Selena and offers her work.

In the same year she released her first studio album, Selena (1989) and after that the adolescent would bring out new works relatively often: Ven conmigo (1990), Entre a mi mundo (1992), Selena Live (1993), Live (1993) and Amor Prohibido (1994).

Her most usual costume for the stages were tops, in the style of Madonna.

In 1993, her album “Live” allowed her to obtain a Grammy for best Mexican-American music album.

Her next record, “Amor prohibido”, was the most successful. It included several songs that had great acceptance by the public as: “Bidi Bidi Bom Bom”, “No me queda mas” and her duo with Samo singing “Forbidden Love”, the English version of “Amor prohibido”.

The success of Selena was such that she led the lists of the Tejano music, even though it was a genre and a culture typically “macho”. She also managed to be in the first position in the Mexican music, although the Texan music was not very popular in that area.

In 1995, her album, “Dreaming of You” sold more than two million copies. That same year she performed a gigantic concert in Houston, Texas.

Also, two of her songs (“I Could Fall in Love” and “Forbidden Love”) became international hits.

Unfortunately, the story of Selena Quintanilla ended up in a tragedy when on March 31 of 1995, Yolanda Saldívar, president of Selena’s fan club, shot her in the back for financial reasons. Both, Yolanda and Selena had known each other for quite a while and Yolanda worked for Selena’s father in one of his stores. When the family realized that Yolanda was swindling them, the singer went to meet her to clarify the situation and Yolanda Saldívar murdered her.

In October 1995 Yolanda Saldivar was officially convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life imprisonment with the possibility of obtaining parole by 2025.

Three days later, on April 3rd Selena’s funerals were held. A week after her murder, People Texas magazine had her on its cover for a week. Besides that, they took out an edition dedicated to her.

As if that was not enough proof of the importance of Selena. On April 12 of 1995, George W. Bush, who at that time was governor of Texas, declared that the anniversary of Selena’s birthday, which was, April 16, would become the “Selena Day” in the state. Bush, explained his decision saying that she represented “the essence of the culture of South Texas”

Many famous artists, especially from the music industry have participated in tributes to her memory. For instance, Talía, Gloria Estefan and Carlos Vives. Also, in 1997, Jennifer Lopez, Edward James Olmos and Constance Marie acted in a film that tells the life of the young artist. The movie was called “Selena” and was directed by Gregory Nava. It featured the production of Selena’s father, Abraham Quintanilla.

As of her death, several compilations of her work have been published as: “Dreaming of You” (1995), “Éxitos del Recuerdo” (1995), “Siempre Selena” (1996), “Anthology” (1998), “Cumbias” (1999), “All My Hits, Vol. 1” (1999), “All My Hits, Vol. 2” (2000), “Selena Remembered” (2005), “The Legend” (2005), “Selena Live!” (2010) and “The Best Of … Selena” (2015).

Additionally, an English album on which she had been working at the time of her death went on sale, as well as other versions of her songs.

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