Place of birth: Lake Jackson, Texas. U.S.
Ethnicity: Mexican and Native American Cherokee
Selena Quintanilla-Pérez (April 16, 1971 – March 31, 1995), known simply as Selena, was an American singer-songwriter. She was named the “top Latin artist of the ’90s” and “Best selling Latin artist of the decade” by Billboard for her fourteen top-ten singles in the Top Latin Songs chart, including seven number-one hits. The singer had the most successful singles of 1994 and 1995, “Amor Prohibido” and “No Me Queda Más“. She was called “The Queen of Tejano music“ and the Mexican equivalent of Madonna. Selena released her first album, Selena y Los Dinos, at the age of twelve. She won Female Vocalist of the Year at the 1987 Tejano Music Awards and landed a recording contract with EMI a few years later. Her fame grew throughout the early 1990s, especially in Spanish-speaking countries.
Selena was born in Lake Jackson, Texas, as the youngest child of a Mexican American father, Abraham Quintanilla Jr. and a half-Cherokee Native American mother, Marcella Ofelia Samora, and was raised as a Jehovah’s Witness. She began singing at the age of three; when she was nine her father launched a singing group consisting of several of his children, Selena y Los Dinos. They initially performed at the restaurant operated by the family. The family went bankrupt soon thereafter. They relocated to Corpus Christi, Texas, where they performed wherever they could: at street corners, weddings, quinceañeras, and fairs. As Selena grew more popular as a musical performer, the demands of her performance and travel schedule began to interfere with her education. Her father pulled her out of school altogether when she was in eighth grade. Eventually, at seventeen, she earned a high school diploma by the American School Program.