20 New facts about Selena Quintanilla via ‘Siempre Selena’
I bet I wasn’t the only one glued to the TV Sunday night as Telemundo aired a very special program called Siempre Selena, in honor of the singer’s 20th death anniversary.
The two-hour long special –filled with rare clips, new interviews with family and friends and songs of her last show at The Astrodome in Houston, Texas –brought back the best of my childhood memories.
Though I declare myself a huge and loyal fan of the Queen of Tejano –since 1990 to be exact– I must admit that the Siempre Selena special taught me some things I never knew before.
Here are 20 (one for every year since her tragic passing in 1995) new facts I discovered via the show.
Selena Quintanilla: Did you know?
1) Selena Quintanilla was discovered by EMI music record label in 1989 after the Tejano Music Awards allowed the aspiring singer to do a 30-minute showcase.
2) Until this day, Selena Quintanilla is the only woman to win the most Tejano Music awards.
3) In fact, by 1995, she had over 50 awards, including a GRAMMY and Billboard Music Award.
4) Shelly Lares, a Tejano singer, was always nominated in the same categories as Selena, but never nabbed an award because Selena would sweep them all. However, in the Selena Siempre special, Lares said she always wanted to win, but her friendship with Selena was more important.
5) Selena Quintanilla wanted to have five children, according to her widower Chris Perez. The day before she passed, Selena had lunch with her mother, Marcella Quintanilla, to tell her that she was ready to form a family with Perez.
6) Her brother, A.B. Quintanilla, describes Selena’s voice as a voice that had no limits.
7) Selena was scared of doing the crossover to the English-language market. The main reason was because once taking the leap, she would market herself as only Selena and not Selena y Los Dinos. According to Chris, she wanted to have her family and band by her side at all times.
8) “Amor Prohibido” was Selena’s favorite Selena song because it was based on the true love story of her paternal grandparents.
9) Selena was tired of always singing “Como la Flor” at concerts, and often compared the record to Michael Jackson’s hit “Billie Jean,” noted A.B.
10) Before her last concert at The Astrodome, Selena asked her brother for his opinion on her sparkly, purple jumpsuit. His sincere answer was that the cameras would make her look short and on the chubby side. Though she got mad with his response, she still owned it and looked flawless as always.
11) A 19-year-old Selena begged her brother to ask Chris what he thought of her as a woman.
12) In a rare clip, Selena stated that her husband and her family were her best friends in the entire world.
13) The Quintanillas had a family plan in the case something happened to one of the members. They never though it’d be Selena.
14) Following the gloomy day of March 31st, 1995, A.B. Quintanilla stated that he felt lost for 15 years and considered Corpus Christi a place of sadness.
15) Suzette Quintanilla, Selena’s sister and drummer of Los Dinos, lost her best friend and admits she has her tough days, especially working in the Selena museum.
16) Whereas Selena’s parents, who are Jehovah Witnesses, found support in the bible and never sought professional help regarding the hardship.
17) Chris Perez kept Selena’s clothes in a sealed plastic bag to preserve her smell.
18) After casting in six cities and over 30K people, only Jennifer Lopez nabbed the main role for the 1997 Selena biopic.
19) Edward James Olmos, who portrayed Selena’s father in the movie, said it’s been the most difficult role of his career. He noted that after every scene, he’d turn around to only see a mourning family.
20) Artists such as Becky G, Kat DeLuna and Jennifer Lopez all owe their careers to the Queen of Tex-Mex, considering her their main musical influence.
And as a bonus, which definitely caught my attention, Selena Quintanilla and Mexican rock band Moderatto once shared a stage together. Moderatto now include a punk rock version of “Amor Prohibido” in their repertoire.
As the special wrapped up, her family assures that if she were alive today, Selena Quintanilla would be an international superstar such as Shakira and Beyonce; something I don’t doubt for a split second.