Facts about Selena
Until her untimely death at age 23, Selena was the charismatic and popular ‘Queen of Tejano.’ (Tejano music is a South Texas/Northern Mexico creation which uses guitars and accordions to blend Mexican music with European polkas and waltzes.)
Selena Quintanilla was raised in Corpus Christi, Texas, and before she turned 10 she was already fronting the family band, Los Dinos. Their 1989 album Selena y Los Dinos put them on the map, and the 1992 album Entre a Mi Mundo (Enter My World) went gold.
Still unknown in much of America, Selena became a star in Mexico and Latin America, known both for her Spanish-language hits and her wholesome sex appeal. A fashion plate who liked to design her own clothes, Selena favored snug pants and midriff-baring bustiers that earned her the nickname “the Mexican Madonna.” Selena Live! (1993) won a Grammy as best Mexican-American album, and the 1994 album Amor Prohibido (Forbidden Love) was another hit.
In 1995, Selena began recording her first English-language album, Dreaming of You, and seemed poised to cross over to mainstream success. But on March 31st of that year she was shot and killed at a Days Inn hotel in Corpus Christi. The shooter was Yolanda Saldivar, the founder of the Selena fan club and manager of Selena’s clothing boutiques, who apparently realized she was about to be fired for embezzling money from the singer. Saldivar was sentenced to life in prison, with a minimum of 30 years.
Selena was played by Jennifer Lopez in the 1997 film Selena. A greatest hits album, Ones, was released in 2002. She was given a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2017.
Selena married Christopher Perez, a guitarist in her band, on April 2, 1992… Selena had a small role as a mariachi singer in the Johnny Depp film Don Juan DeMarco, which was released just a week after her death in 1995… According the Houston Chronicle, the name Los Dinos “was taken from the Italian slang word for los muchachos, the boys”… Yolanda Saldivar’s first opportunity for parole will be in the year 2025, coincidentally the same year of release originally scheduled for Arthur Bremer, who shot George Wallace. Bremer was released early in 2007… With the approval of Selena’s family, the revolver used to murder her was cut into pieces and scattered in Corpus Christi Bay in 2002… Selena was honored with a Google Doodle in the U.S. on October 17, 2017, more than 22 years after her death.
Something in Common with Selena
- Pop Musicians born in Texas (4)
- Musicians born in Texas (35)
- Musicians born in the United States (414)
- Aries Musicians (47)
4 Good Links
- Official site of her father's music company, with plenty about Selena
- A sad bit of history: Her 1995 obituary from The New York Times
- Proud report from the Corpus Christi Caller-Times, with links to past stories
- Her full life story, from the folks at Biography.com