Emilio's Who's Who
Throughout his already fabled career, Emilio Estefan Jr. has worked with a
stellar array of artists of all musical stripes, including his superstar wife
Unlike other music giants, however Emilio has cut albums with idols from both the english - and spanish - language worlds. Following are thumbnail profiles of some of the great Anglo and Latino artists with whom Emilio has worked, accompanied by Emilio's thoughts about their talents and personalities.
Gloria hardly need any introduction. From the first time "Conga" hit the charts in 1985,
her varied and durable career - initially as lead vocalist of Miami Sound Machine and then later as a solo star - has been filled with gold and platinum records and Grammy awards. Indeed, her latest album, "gloria!", was recently certified gold by Recording Industry Assn.
Of America (RIAA). As with many of her past Epic albums that have contained both English and Spanish tracks, "gloria!" has generated singles that entered the pop, adult contemporary, dance and Latin charts. As of press time, "Oye" had scaled Hot Latin Tracks while reaching No. 3 with a bullet on Billboard's Club Play chart. Gloria is the only recording artist to have topped the pop, adult contemporary, dance and Latin charts.
"Gloria is the most important person in my life because we did this together.
I am proud of her as an artist and as a human being. Gloria always did what she believed in, and that is why she has had a song career.
Anyone can have a hit, but if you are in the business 15, 20 years and you still make hits, it is because you are true to your-self and you are real.
GLORIA REPRESENTS THAT".
Devastatingly handsome, this raspy-voiced balladeer with increasingly famous, icy-blu eyes began his prosperous entertainment career as a soap-opera actor and television host who seriously turned his sights toward recording in 1992. Ponce's eponymously titled album on EMI Latin has yielded the emotive ballad "Rezo", a No. 1 smash on Hot Latin Tracks that has been followed up by the hit "Decir Adios". Born in Puerto Rico to Cuban parents, Ponce is temporarily returning to his acting roots in november when he will appear on an episode of Fox-TV's primetime soap "Beverly Hills 90210".
"Carlos has the whole package - the personality. He has magic because he is very real".
A former backup singer for Gloria, this two-time Grammy winner has
successfully followed in his mentor's footsteps by carving out a career that has
thrived in both the English - and Spanish language markets.
Secada's eponymous 1992 English language disc earned him a Grammy. The Spanish
counterpart to that CD, "Otro Dia Mas Sin Verte", nailed down four
consecutive chart-topping singles - a record up to that point.
Secada subsequently took a break from recording in 1995 to star in the Broadway
production of "Grease". Now signed to Sony, he is working on his label
debut, slated for release early in 1999.
"Jon is one of the most talented persons I have ever known. His singing is incredible, and he is a great writer".
From the start, Mexican idol Alejandro Fernandez had big shoes to fill - his father is legendary ranchero icon Vicente Fernandez. But the younger Fernandez proved more than capable as he launched his solo career several years back as a big-voiced interpreter of traditon-rich ranchera music. Then, in 1996, after having worked with Emilio on the Olympics-themed album "Voces Unidas", Alejandro expressed a desire to record with the high-profile producer.
So, in the midst of a rapidly flourishing career as a ranchero, Alejandro switched gears by coming up with a pop record with ranchera flavor "Me Estoy Enamorando". Produced by Emilio, "Me Estoy Enamorando" is a best-selling album that recently was certified gold.
The CD also has delivered four No. 1 singles on Hot Latin Tracks, among yhem a duet smash, "En El Jardin", that Alejandro recorded with Gloria. A show-stopping performer who attracts more women's underwear during his shows than Tom Jones, Alejandro is currently on tour in support of his smash album.
"Alejandro is one-of-a-kind - he always has a smile and is so down-to-heart and so talented. You book a studio for one or two weeks and then he comes and says
'I want to get this done in one or two days' - it's amazing".
Through her immensely popular soap operas, Mexico's diva of divas, Thalia, is one of the few female artist in the Latino market who has legions of fans throughout Latin America, including Brazil. And then the EMI Latin Star hooked up with Emilio for a hit track. "Piel Morena", taken from her 1995 top-10 album, "En Extasis", set the stage for their collaborative 1997 hit CD, "Amor A La Mexicana". Emilio is slated to go into the studio in october to cut Thalia's next disc, due in the first quarter of 1999.
"Thalia is Thalia, what can I say? She is the only person who can do anything and do it the way she wants to do it".
Colombian singer/songwriter Shakira burst onto the international stage nearly three years ago with a well-crafted, groove-drenched pop album on Sony Discos titled "Pies Descalzos". Propelled by the runaway hit "Estoi Aqui", Shakira's album went on to strike gold in the US.
In addition, the CD sold 1.2 millions units in Brazil, a country ehre Latin artist historically do not sell well. "Pies Descalzos" earned Shakira numerous industry awards, including three trophies in 1997 at Billboard's Fourth Latin Music Awards. Sony is expected to release Shakira's next album - produced by Emilio - this month (September 1998).
"Shakira is very intelligent. She represents the young generation and how they feel. She is a jewel".