The Rise & Fall of the Queen of Tejano Music By Lydia Gutierrez
photo credits:www.nndb.com/people/ 690/000026612/selena_02.jpg, http://lsze.cosam.calpoly.edu/shapiro/webgallery/CloseUps/images/White%20Rose.jpg
About her.. Selena Quintanilla Perez
Selena Etc., in Corpus Christi in 1994.. It had been her dream since she was a little Born: April 16, 1971 in Lake Jackson, Texas girl to sell the clothing and jewelry that she loved to design. In January of 1995, The family eventually relocated to Corpus another boutique opened in San Antonio, Christi. Family: Abraham (Father), Marcella (Mother), Suzette (Sister), A.B. III (Brother) April 2, 1992, she married the bandâ€™s guitarist Chris PĂŠrez. By the age of 19, she was a millionaire. She could not speak Spanish and learned the Spanish lyrics for her songs phonetically. Selena opened her first boutique and salon, 2
photo credits: www.howard.k12.sd.us/.../ index.htm, Bob Prager, Bob Prager Selena Portfolio, Mary and Jeff Bell Library, Special Collections & Archives Department, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi.
Timeline to Stardom 1994
1980 - 1983
-Selena y Los Dinos begin performing -Selena y Los Dinos does first recording
Has role in the film “Don Juan De Marco”. - Band debuted in New York, Los Angeles, Argentina & Puerto Rico
-Receives Female Vocalist of the Year & Performer of the Year at the Tejano Music Awards
- Released, “Amor Prohibido,” and went gold
1995 Began recording first English language
album that was expected to launch her into
-Signed by EMI Latin
a crossover career
- Won six Tejano Music Awards, including
-Releases first album
-“Ven Conmigo” goes gold, the first Tejano
- Nominated for a second Grammy for
female vocalist for the eighth time
record to go gold
-Won Grammy for best Mexican American performance for “Selena Live”
- Hispanic Business magazine reports Selena has assests worth $5 million
- Starts Selena Etc. clothing manufacturing business
3 photo credits: www.selena.friko.pl/ biografia.html, www.comolaflor.org/ html/htmlfront., www.biografiasyvidas.com/ biografia/s/selena.htm htm
Music Selena was a household name in Mexico
The summer after her death, Selena’s
and much of Latin America and was
album “Dreaming of You”, debuted at
on the verge of an unprecedented
number one on the Billboard music
breakthrough to the English-speaking
charts in the US, making her the first
pop audience at the time of her death.
Hispanic singer to accomplish this feat and the second highest debut
Selena’s 1994 album, Amor Prohibido
after Michael Jackson’s “HIStory.” On
— which won a Grammy nomination
its release date, the album sold over
— sold six hundred thousand copies in
175,000 copies, a record for a female
the United States.
pop singer, and sold two million copies in its first year. Songs such as “I Could
By 1995, Selena’s albums had sold a
Fall In Love” and “Dreaming Of You”
combined total of three million copies.
were played widely by mainstream English
photo credits: www.wikipedia.com, www.amazon.co
Music latter reaching #25 on the Billboard
Music Awards ceremonies, including
Hot 100. Meanwhile, “I Could Fall In
best female entertainer; best female
Love,” while ineligible for the Hot 100
vocalist; album of the year; Tejano
at the time, did reach #12 on the Hot
crossover song; and record of the
100 Airplay chart and the top 10 on the
year. An amazed Selena was quoted
Adult Contemporary Chart. “Dreaming
as saying in Time magazine, “Never
of You” has sold approximately five
in my dreams would I have thought
million copies in the USA.
I would become this big. I am still freaking out.”
Selena’s “Bidi Bidi Bom Bom” was named song of the year award at the
Selena was only the third Hispanic
Tejano Music Awards in early 1995.
performer to ever cross from the Latin
She also won five more of the fifteen
division to the more mainstream part
awards presented at the 1995 Tejano
of the record company.
om photo credits: www.wikipedia.com, www.amazon.com
March 31, 1995 Earlier this year, the Quintanillas discovered that Yolanda Saldívar, the president of Selena’s fan club and the manager of her boutiques, was stealing money and decided to fire her. Soon after the fallout, Selena agreed to meet Saldívar in a Days Inn hotel in Corpus Christi, Texas, on the morning of March 31, 1995 in order to retrieve paperwork for tax purposes. At the motel, Selena demanded the missing financial papers. An argument ensued and Saldívar drew a gun from her purse, pointing it first at her own head and then at Selena. As the singer turned and left the room, Saldívar shot her once in the back. Selena fled to the manager’s office in the lobby for help. Before collapsing, Selena named Saldívar as her assailant. Selena died an hour later at the hospital. She was 23.
photo credits: www.howard.k12.sd.us/.../ index.htm
Saldívar holed up with the revolver in the cab of a pickup truck in the Days Inn parking lot. For hours she threatened to shoot herself while negotiating with police via a cellular car phone. As the news of Selena’s murder spread, the singer’s fans stood vigil at the Days Inn. Saldívar finally surrendered hours later.
The Aftermath As word of Selena’s death spread, fans reacted
first with disbelief, then with a massive, pub-
April 12, 1995, George W. Bush, then the gover-
lic display of adoration.
nor of Texas, declared April 16 (Selena’s birth-
Churches hastily or-
ganized prayer vigils. Tejano radio stations
day), “Selena Day.”
played Selena’s music around the clock. Record stores sold out of her albums.
June 2006, Selena was commemorated with a museum and a bronze life-sized statue.
Major networks interrupted regular programming to break the news; Tom Brokaw referred
Saldívar was convicted for the murder October
to Selena as “The Mexican Madonna.”
23rd, 1995. Three days later she was sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for at
Fifteen hundred mourners attended a vigil. Ten
least 30 years.
thousand people went to Corpus Christi to pass by Selena’s coffin. In Los Angeles, four thousand people gathered to honor her. Mourners also gathered in San Antonio at two separate sites. “People” magazine published a commemorative issue titled Selena 1971-1995, Her Life photo credits: www.howard.k12.sd.us/.../ index.htm, Bob Prager, Bob Prager Selena Portfolio, Mary and Jeff Bell Library, Special Collections & Archives Department, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi.
The Movie... In 1997, the movie “Selena” debuted and starred award-winning actors Jennifer Lopez, Edward James Olmos, Constance Marie, Jacob Vargas, and Jackie Guerra. Directed by Gregory Nava, the biopic opened with positive reviews and was one of the highest- grossing films in 1997. The
Mexican-American community, since Lopez is Puerto Rican and played the role of a singer of Mexican descent. But Selena’s fans supported the movie, and Lopez’s role in the film helped elevate her career. Although Lopez would succeed as a pop star herself a few years later, Selena’s voice was dubbed in for all the songs in the movie. For her role in the film, Lopez was nominated for a Golden Globe award for Best Actress in a Musical.
photo credits: www.impawards.com/ 1997/posters/selena.jpg, www.movieweb.com