by KENDRA SALAS
Selena Quintanilla is a living legacy that marked people’s hearts all throughout the US and Mexico. Award-winning recording artist, Selena, first began singing at the age of 10 when she was the lead singer of her family’s band, Selena Y Los Dinos.
Selena came out with her debut in the 80’s with albums Amor Prohibido and Selena Live. She grew up speaking English but her father also taught her how to sing in Spanish, winning the hearts of many Latinos in the US. In 1987, Selena won “Best Female Vocalist of the Year” and “Performer of the Year”. Her fans nicknamed her “Mexican Madonna” because she would wear these amazing outfits on stage. Selena was an idol to many of her fans and they were overjoyed to hear that she had married the lead guitarist of her band, Chris Perez, in 1992. Her fans grew by the thousands and supported everything she did. Selena had very strong sales, winning her a Grammy for Best Mexican-American album.
After her album Live was released, she started working on an English-language album, but didn’t get to see the outcome. Selena was murdered in 1995 by Yolanda Saldivar, the founder of her fan club. Yolanda was being fired after Selena’s Dad, Abraham Quintanilla, exposed her for embezzling money. Her murder sent a shock in the Latino community and they mourned for her loss.
After her death, her album Dreaming of You, was released and became a tremendous hit. 20 years later, Selena’s music still remains very popular till this day. Selena’s legacy is forever lived on in a film released in 1997, played by Jennifer Lopez. The movie displays the events of Selena’s life up until her death.
On the 20th anniversary of Selena’s loss, Jennifer Lopez stepped on stage during the Billboard Latin Music Awards to perform a tribute to the beloved Selena Quintanilla. Jennifer Lopez was accompanied by Selena’s former band, her family. JLo performed I Could Fall in Love, Como La Flor, and No Me Queda Mas. She portrayed Selena’s outfits by wearing a bejeweled crop top and high waist pants. She also did Selena’s famous “washing machine” dance move. When Bidi Bidi Bom Bom came on, Jennifer Lopez ripped of the top where she had a replica of Selena’s famous bra bustier. She had a standing ovation during the whole performance. Jennifer Lopez yelled out “ Selena, we love you!”, before hugging Selena’s brothers and sister.