Before her death in 1995, Selena Quintanilla Perez had already earned the nickname the “Latin Madonna” for her wildly popular Tejano songs, which mixed polka, country and pop music and won her a Grammy in 1994. The Texas native was poised to become a crossover star with the release of her first English-language album, Dreaming of You, when she was fatally shot by a crazed fan and former employee just weeks before her 24th birthday. Three months later, after Governor George W. Bush declared April 12 Selena Day in Texas, her album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard charts, selling 331,000 copies in one week — ranking as that year’s second-best debut, behind only Michael Jackson’s HIStory. The tragedy of her death was chronicled in a 1997 biopic starring a then-unknown Jennifer Lopez as Selena.
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