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Selena Gomez -- actress and singer

My name comes from a really, really popular Tejano singer when I was younger that passed away.  My father named me after her, Selena Quintanilla.  And I was completely educated on her growing up.  I knew her music -- I still know her music.  I still love her and I look up to her as a musician because I think she was extremely brave for everything she went through.

Suzette Quintanilla Arriaga - Selena's older sister and Los Dinos drummer*

What sticks out is the closeness that we shared in the tour bus. That was my favorite time, and I think hers, too . . . she used to like crawling into my bunk, like, after we performed at some concert. She would crawl into my bunk, and I'm a big girl, you know, bunk space is not very wide. I would turn sideways and she would lay in there with me, close the curtain, and we would just talk about our dreams and our goals and having children and her kids playing with my kids, her dream of her stores . . . just life.

Joe Nick Patoski - author of "Selena: Como La Flor"*

She had it all. She would have been far bigger (had she lived). Gloria Estefan watch out, Madonna look over your shoulder.

Deborah Paredez - author of "Selenidad"*

I was the same age as Selena, and so I think I felt an affinity to have someone of my generation and understood the particular complexities of what it meant to be working class Tejana that grew up speaking English, struggled with Spanish. There were a number of points of identification I felt with her.

Frances Santos - poet and educator*

Is she an icon? On more than one occasion, either in restaurants or in cantinas, I have seen her photo placed next to John F. Kennedy, Pope John Paul II, Henry B. Gonzalez and La Virgen de Guadalupe. It is these images of Selena that are in the everyday of where people go to eat, drink, dance and laugh that are my favorite memories of her, and they continue on.

Artist Ruben Cubillos - who helped create Selena's logo*

When I hear her music, it triggers this image in my head, like a small movie, of her bubbly personality and her dancing, playful and serious at the same time.

Erica Gonzaba - young pop singer*

She had so much charisma. When she smiled, you just loved her.

Phanie Diaz - Girl in a Coma drummer*

It all starts with our parents. Our mother was a big Selena fan. Jenn (bassist Jenn Alva) and I went to Longfellow Middle School together. At that time, you had to have a Nirvana record and you had to have a Selena record. She had so many of the same influences we have, and she came from the same background.

Aramando Lichtenberger - Grammy winning producer*

People will always remember the Tejano Queen Selena. And what that does is, all over the world, people that didn't know the term 'Tejano' existed, they get curious.

* Compiled by Hector Saldaña, Elaine Ayala and Jim Beal Jr for "15 years after the death of Selena" story that appeared on MySanAntonio.com

Franne Golde - songwriter (co-writer of Dreaming Of You)

...Yes, I did meet her. What a wonderful, genuine human being. And what a loss.

Bobby Soloman Smith - singer

uoted in the Houston Chronicle 03/30/08 (Story by Joe Guerra)

(My favorite Selena song is) No Me Queda Más — that is the most beautiful ballad. You can hear the story, the emotion. The girl could deliver a song. She always gives me chills on that song.

Selena influenced me in many ways: to never give up on your dreams, work hard and give it your all. Her influence is still with me to this day. I'm still chasing a dream, I'm always finding something else to challenge myself, as she did with her fashion line. She (also) thought outside the box with her music and style.

Jennifer Marie Rios - singer

Quoted in the Houston Chronicle 03/30/08 (Story by Joe Guerra)

(My favorite Selena song is) Amor Prohibido. That was the first cumbia that caught my attention and was like, 'Wow.' I can really relate to it.

The first song that I ever sang in front of my parents was Como la Flor. I was like 7, 8 years old. In a sense, I took something from her voice. Every time I listen to a singer that I like, I try to take something from them. I can't be myself unless all of my influences come in together.

Her music was so ahead of its time. It could still be hitting today. It somebody were to come out with that tomorrow, it would still be fresh, it would still be new.

Karina Nistal - singer

uoted in the Houston Chronicle 03/30/08 (Story by Joe Guerra)

Cómo Quisiera is definitely one I found myself singing a lot. It's about a lost love that cannot be recovered. That song was performed so well with the mariachi feel. My favorite English one from her is Captive Heart.

Selena continues to influence me because she was driven. She loved her family and her fans. She was a devoted entertainer who sang with her heart and soul. ... She was charismatic, and I could feel the emotion in all of her songs.

Paula DeAnda - singer

Quoted in the Houston Chronicle 03/30/08 (Story by Joe Guerra)

(My favorite Selena song is) I think Como la Flor. She had that big intro for it (live); she sang it really slow, without the music, and then the music comes in. That was really dramatic.

She's definitely one of a kind. She set an example for all Latinas out there, that they can do it, they can make it big. She's an amazing singer. Nobody can ever be like her. Nobody can top her.

Beyoncé - singer/actress

uoted in the Houston Chronicle 03/30/08 (Story by Joe Guerra)

I remember listening to her songs and thinking about how amazing she sounded.  I could only imagine what her career would be like today.

Abraham - Father (from the Selena Vive program)

Selena was a beautiful person, good natured & humble.  She passed through my life like a twinkle of the eye and her memory will be with me till I die.

Marcy - Mother (from the Selena Vive program)

It makes me very proud knowing you left something so beautiful behind.  The world knew you as Selena, the artist.  To me you will always be my baby.

Ricky Vela - Los Dinos (from the Selena Vive program)

I'm glad that I got to know you as a person, and it makes me happy that you were able to leave behind something positive for people.  It's great that you were able to give so much happiness to so many through your music, and it makes me happy that I was able to have been some part of that.  Also, through your family's story, you were able to show people that hopes and dream are reachable through hard work, perseverance and belief in oneself.  I wish I could tell people how wonderful you were, but I don't know how to share all the many kindnesses that you showed me.  Ultimately, through your untimely loss, I hope that people can look at their own lives and realize how important it is to cherish their loved ones every day.

Joe Ortega - Los Dinos (from the Selena Vive program)

I am so proud to have been part of Selena's music.  But much more than that, I am so thankful to have know her as the beautiful, genuine person that she was.  Her laughter and pretty smile will always be part of me.  Te Extrano Con Todo Mi Coroazon.

Chris Perez - husband (from the Selena Vive program)

I've learned so many things from you.  You taught me the importance of family, to stand up for what I believe, to not be afraid to follow my dreams, and most important, you showed me what it is to feel true love.  Thank you so much for teaching me these things.  You will always be an inspiration to everyone who knew you and countless others.  We miss you and we love you.

Pete Astudillo - Los Dinos (from the Selena Vive program)

En la vida es un privilegio poder hacer lo que realmente uno ama.  Y aun es mas especial cuando uno comarte y vive ese sueno con alguien como Selena.  Gracias por el honor de compartir tu vida, tu talento, tu musica y tu amor conmigo.  Nunca te olvidaremos.

"Life is a privilege, we can make our own reality and it is very special when a dream is lived by a person like Selena. Thank you for the honor of sharing your life, talent, music and love with me. I'll never forget you."

Art Meza - Los Dinos (from the Selena Vive program)

Selena, I remember seeing you perform before I was in the band, and I thought "Wow," the passion you had when you were on stage singing.  The message with your songs came from your heart, and that was a big impression on me and the whole world that heard you sing.  I will never forget your smile and your laughter, and the memories on the road with you and Los Dinos will always be in my heart.  Miss you!

AB - Brother (from the Selena Vive program)

I am very fortunate to have had a sister that was not only the best, but was also my best friend and in my eyes one of the greatest singers the world got to know.  Ten years later you're still the best.  I miss you tremendously.

Suzette - Sister (from the Selena Vive program)

I feel blessed for having you as long as I did.  Memories are all I have now...Oh, how beautiful they are.  Tonight I will walk away with my head high knowing that you will always be forever in everyone's hearts.  (Te extrano, Buffy)

Marlon Brando

After he met Selena on the set of Don Juan DeMarco:

She is a very special and very beautiful girl.  She has a gift.

Gloria Estefan

Regarding her participation in the 10th Anniversary Selena Tribute Concert:

I would love to pay tribute to Selena.  I’d met her before that tragedy and she was on the brink of crossing over and doing amazing things.  She really had the talent, she had everything.  I was very, very sad when that happened.

The Barrio Boyzz - EMI Label Mates

Working in the studio with Selena was always a pleasure. we were always laughing and joking around... always very happy and energetic. She was a beautiful person and there was always this great chemistry between her and us. we had just completed the video for "Dondequiera Que Estes" and we went on to do a mini-tour around Texas and Mexico. It was an honor for us to go on the road with her.

Alvaro Torres

She was always pleasant to be around, always, always.

Johnny Canales - TV Show Host

I had the pleasure to see Selena Quintanilla Perez grow and blossom into a beautiful intelligent woman. I can remember Selena as a young girl, working hard at her talent.

She was always very professional in her actions and she never let her talent or fame take away from the down to earth person she was.

Selena always believed in the goodness of people. It was her kindness that audiences all over associated with. Selena was and always will be very special to me. It is not often that a person has the ability to work and grown with someone that way I was able to with Selena. I'll miss her dearly...she was truly an angel sent from Heaven.

Barry Rudolph - Recording Engineer

My experience with Selena was all too brief...just two sessions. She sang all the vocals on a song called "Boy Like That" for the BMG album "The Songs of West Side Story". Producer David Pack had the brilliant idea to cast Selena singing this Latin influenced highlight from "West Side Story". I recorded her at Pack's studio over the course of three days with the Grammy ceremonies intervening on the day off. Selena was a joy to work with...such a great singer, so positive and so much to live for. We all miss her artistic love.

David Pack - Producer

from "The Songs Of West Side Story" CD:

This track is dedicated to Mr & Mrs Quintanilla, Chris Perez, Suzette Arriaga and Selena's extended family. A BOY LIKE THAT was one of the shortest songs of the original score, and it was particularly difficult to expand and contemporize. After my first 2-hour phone call with Selena, her spirit crystallized the direction for the "new jack/Latin" vibe, which she loved, and after the recording sessions we talked about this being one of the cool "little tunes" of the project. We couldn't have known that this would be her last recording, made within the last three weeks of her life. She gave her all and was proud of how far she had stretched as an artist to deliver this performance. Selena's loving and ever-giving spirit is truly eternal. I will hold the memory of our friendship forever in my heart.

Emilio & Cindy Navaria

We are shocked and devastated about the tragic death of Selena. Her passing is a tremendous loss to the music industry. She was one of the brightest stars in Tejano music and had an incredible career ahead of herself and, now only is it a loss to the industry; it is a great personal loss. She will be deeply missed by all, and our prayers are with the Quintanilla family.

Selena was very talented and she reached a lot of people. She would talk about anything to anybody: There was none of this prima-donna stuff.

Elisa Gonzalez-Rubio
- Manager of Hispanic Consumer Marketing Coca-Cola USA

We at Coca-Cola are extremely affected by the loss of Selena. Our hearts go out to her family and fans. Selena was 17 years old, and a relative unknown in the music industry, when she signed her first contract with Coca-Cola. She will be dearly missed...

Lionel Sosa - Sosa, Bromley, Aguilar and Associates

(San Antonio Advertising firm whose major client was Coca-Cola- now Bromley Communications)                        

from Joe Patoski's 'Como La Flor':

This kid had this innate ability to remember everybody's name, be totally gracious, know who everybody was.  I've spent all my life trying to figure out politics and who's who and who has the power, and she instinctively knew it.  Maybe she didn't know it, but she was just wonderful to everybody, whether it was the assistant at a shoot or the president of Coca-Cola.  She knew who everybody was, hugged them, and made it seem like it was a privilege for her to be doing what she was doing.  You always got that feeling like [she thought] I'm so lucky to be here.

Cameron Randle - recording industry executive

Selena was not merely forging an exceptional career, she was defining a new genre as uniquely American as Delta blues or New Orleans jazz.

Albert Huerta - Attorney

from Joe Patoski's 'Como La Flor':

She was a very personable individual and very sincere, very down-to-earth, very humble.  She was punctual, she was gracious.  When she was interviewed, she always said the right thing.  She was young, but she was very mature.  She stood in a class by herself.

Al Aguilar - Former President of Sosa, Bromley, Aguilar and Associates

(San Antonio Advertising firm whose major client was Coca-Cola- now Bromley Communications)      

from Joe Patoski's 'Como La Flor':

I have this feeling she served a very important purpose in her short period of time here.  She was like a messenger, an angel that came down here and touched all these lives and said all these great things.

Joe Nick Patoski - author of "Selena: Como La Flor"

I believe that she's going to endure as an icon, particularly among the Latin culture, as a female role model.

Tony Joe White - singer/songwriter

That whole thing broke my heart.  She may have been the most beautiful woman I've ever seen.  Corpus Christi, Texas, was where I got started after I left Louisiana; I was 18 or 19. It's like the whole mood of that place is still with me.  Of course, she came along long after I had left there.  I really loved her music; I loved what was going on and what was about to happen with her worldwide, before the shooting.

I felt so bad about her death that I had to get it off my mind by writing about it.  I went off to San Antonio when they filmed the movie with Jennifer Lopez and Eddie Olmos, who's a real good friend of mine; he played her father in the movie.  He called me and told me about the movie; I told him, 'I got this song about her going.' I had 'Selena,' but it had music to another tune.  Eddie and I ended up writing a song for the soundtrack, called 'One More Time.' It was sung by a Spanish blind guy named Lil' Ray who sounds a little like Stevie Wonder.  They didn't use the song 'Selena,' so I made sure it got on this album (One Hot July).

Mario Ruiz -  President, EMI Mexico

Jose Berhar and I first saw Selena in 1989 and we thought she was awesome as an artist. Now we know, not only what a great artist she had become, but also what a tremendous person she was and how many people loved her.

Stephen J. Finer - Esq. Attorney representing the estate of Selena

While she was an amazing young talent with the world ahead of her, I will remember her more for her humility, honesty, warmth, and beauty. She had a special gift of "connecting" with all those she met or performed for, and she never let celebrity form a wall between her and her fans.

Gregory Nava - Director of "Selena"

Selena...she was an original. She had style.

KC Porter - Songwriter/Producer

With Selena I learned a lot about joyfulness, because of her--she had so much joy.

Jose Behar -  President, EMI Latin

When I think of Selena nowadays, what comes to mind is not her musical career, even though it was enormously successful and remains so more than two months after her death.

Rather, I think about how much I miss this special person, who was so caring, so warm.

Recently, I sat down with Selena's father Abraham Quintanilla to try to find out why Selena possessed this amazingly wholesome personality.

What I discovered was that it was Selena's religious beliefs that made her the way she was. Selena felt her Creator was the only thing that mattered. Everything else was irrelevant.

Selena's religious conviction thoroughly explains why she treated her career strictly as a business. Once she stepped off stage, Selena could go into a drug store or supermarket and just be people.

Selena was humble, genuine and fully aware that her earthly achievements were only temporary. Selena's mission to stay on higher ground had provided inspiration for me, as well as for her family, friends and fans.

As a recording artist, Selena was that proverbial needle in the haystack who was authentically Hispanic and authentically American. Selena had a lot of R&B in her, but she also absorbed other musical influences, including her father's Tejano roots.

I am convinced if she had lived Selena would have been major, major star in the Anglo record world. As it turns out, Selena left us with an enduring legacy immeasurably more valuable that hit records and sold out concerts. She heightened our awareness of what really counts: Love and respect for one another.

More from Jose:

Nobody can predict or mastermind a phenomenon.  And phenomenon comes from greatness and talent and humility and goodness. They are all things Selena was, and still is about.

She had such a unique style, a beautiful look and such a fresh optimistic outlook about everything. It was just very combustible and it made her into the phenomenon she turned out to be.

Cristina Saralegui - Spanish Talk Show Host

In the heart is where I will always keep the memory of Selena, the very kind and talented performer whom I got to know and interview

Jennifer Lopez

I'm definitely a fan, not just of her music but of the person that she was in her everyday life.

Graciela Beltran - Singer

It was a privilege for all of the artists to participate in recording Viviras Selena.  Selena made a valuable contribution in both the U.S. and Mexico by achieving the 'crossover'.  She spurred us to follow her example.

Elsa Garcia

Sad is my heart because of the tragic loss of Selena. Great was her contribution to the music industry and as a woman. I will miss you Selena

Erik Estrada - actor

from April 30, 1997 America Online chat:

I met Selena (while filming 'Dos Mujeres Un Camino') and I have to tell you, I'm really really saddened by this incident that happened. The termination of such a beautiful creature. She was a total blessing for the Hispanic women in the entertainment industry. She was a major talent, very sweet, easy to approach and talk to.  Even I, when I meet certain people, I get a little bit nervous too because I'm a big fan like everyone else.  I can relate to actors and such, but I'm also a major fan.  Meeting her was delicious and she was just as delicious in person and it's just really sad that she's no longer with us. You would have loved her if you met her, but her music will always be with us.  But if she was still alive, she'd be a major contributor in this century and the next.

Lourdes Portillo - Filmmaker (Corpus: A Home Movie for Selena)

It's so interesting to me to do research on a person. You usually find all these things you don't like. But the more I talked to people, the more I realized Selena was this really wonderful human being, really talented and charismatic. She lives in the hearts of people in Texas in that way.

Selena would have been a really great star. She was adventurous enough that she would have gone to many different areas. Her voice was so great ... I feel the sadness that everybody feels about her in the film. I don't think there are that many people who are that talented who come along.

Eva Longoria - Desperate Housewives

I’m from the same hometown, Corpus Christi. I didn’t know her but every month we would go see her play. She was such a local heroine. She would be the J.Lo of today had she lived. She was doing the clothing line and the beauty boutiques and the singing and the acting way before anybody else. She would have been bigger than life. She was truly talented.

Soy de la misma ciudad, Corpus Christi. No la conocía pero todos los meses la íbamos a ver cantar. Era una gran heroína local. Si viviera, sería la J.Lo de hoy en día. Tenía una línea de ropa y boutiques de belleza y el canto y la actuación mucho antes que todos los demás. Hubiera sido bigger than life. Era verdaderamente talentosa.

Mando San Roman, PD at KKPS/KNVO McAllen, Texas

There isn't anybody that's been able to replace her.  She was one of a kind—loved by both young and old, male and female. Many have tried to become the next Selena without success.

Rudy Trevino - 'Tejano Gold' host (Corpus Christi-based radio show)

The impact she had in the Tejano market in her short life made a big impression, and her music is timeless.  And as Latinos, we feel we have a very positive role model that we're very proud of, and we want to hold on to her legacy.

Abraham Quintanilla (father)

We get parents and their kids coming in here almost every day.  It is amazing how almost everybody from different parts of the country always say, almost word for word, the same thing: They love Selena, the kids want to be like her. I don't know, I can't explain it.

Chingo Bling  (musician)

My old time favorite (is) Selena, God rest her soul. I would love to talk to her family and ask permission to maybe use some old tracks of her vocals and make a sweet song. That would be like a dream come true for me. She has been gone for a long time and there is still no talent like her out there.

La India  (Salsa Singer)

Selena is a legend.  People fell in love with her because of her smile, her music and her voice. More than anything, Selena was a fighter who struggled to reach whatever fame she had, with her family and her husband.  Even for people on the East Coast who didn't know Tex-Mex, they knew her. She made the music very popular. I felt very honored to have been there at the tribute and perform in a salute to the Tejano queen.

John Lannert

from the "Dreaming Of You" CD:

Selena has been recognized by her fervent fans and admiring musical contemporaries as a riveting performer who was a genuinely humble and truly caring person once she stepped off stage...

Two awards events held in held earlier this year (1995) go far in illustrating why the tragic death of this Tejano superstar on March 31st, 1995, has generated such an ardent outpouring of sympathy and remembrance on both sides of the Mexico-US border.

EMI Latin president José Behar, who was on hand for both awards programs, vividly recalls the unfolding of circumstances at the shows.

"In February, I attended the Tejano Music Awards with Selena," says Behar. "During the ceremony, a trophy earmarked for Selena was mistakenly given to another artist. Upon learning of the error, Selena felt so badly for the would-be awardee that she broke out into tears and refused to go onstage to receive the trophy." Behar tried to console Selena and asked her to go receive the award, but she would not hear of it.

Several weeks later at the Grammy Awards on March 1st, 1995, the shoe was on the other foot as Selena was in line to win her second consecutive Grammy in the Mexican-American category. Alas, she did not snare the award, which sent Behar into an emotional tailspin.

"All of a sudden she started trying to cheer me up," recounts Behar, "saying 'Wait a minute! I'm the star and you're supposed to be cheering me up!' Then we both had a laugh."

Both awards ceremonies underscore Selena's keen ability to valuate any situation by its true virtue. Regardless of circumstances, Selena's perspective was singularly clear and well-grounded in religious convictions that emphasized a humble approach to life spiced with a little humor.

Indeed, hearty laughs and good times were bountiful during Selena's slow, but steady, climb to the top of the Tejano world.

"It was like we would go on vacation every weekend," remembers Abraham Quintanilla Jr., Selena's father and manager. "Every town we played, we were meeting new people, new friends. So eventually everywhere we would play there would be a group of people to greet us."

Selena's long odyssey to super stardom began 18 years ago in Lake Jackson, Tx., a blue collar oil town south of Houston where Quintanilla began rehearsing a timid, but strong-voiced, Selena - then 6 years old - her older brother Abraham III (nicknamed A.B.) on bass and older sister Suzette on drums.

Called Selena y Los Dinos, the group started playing at a restaurant owned by Quintanilla, who had to shutter his eatery in 1981 when the Texas oil industry collapsed. That same year, the Quintanilla family moved to Corpus Christi, which would serve as a touring base for the fledging band now forced to take to the road to put food on the table.

Overcoming her innate shyness, Selena blossomed into a kinetic stage personality as she began incorporating urban dance moves and r&b-influenced vocals into a show whose musical performance featured polka-rooted rancheras offset by an occasional pop/funk cover. "Along the way," says Behar, "Selena also overcame the perception that female performers could not survive in the male-dominated Tejano arena."

What's more, Selena emerged as an inspirational idol for many female fans of Tejanos starved for a role model.

"You'd go to her concerts," remarked Quintanilla, "and they would be filled with little girls, middle-aged women - even viejitas, the little grandmothers."

Quintanilla recollects Selena saying she had two main goals: To crossover into the Anglo market and to open her own line of clothing boutiques. With the group's signing to EMI Latin, Selena hoped to achieve her first objective.

So did Behar.
"I signed her to EMI Latin for the crossover market," says Behar. "I had no idea she was going to become as big as she became in the Latin market."

Selena eventually would get her crossover stardom through the efforts of Behar and Nancy Brennan, Vice President A & R, EMI Records. But Selena y Los Dinos were beginning to hit in the Latino market via the band's 1991 album Ven Conmigo, which reached the top of Billboard's regional Mexican chart. The next year Selena was now being billed as a solo act releasing her first album, Entre A Mi Mundo. In a bid to break the album in the important Mexican market, Quintanilla coordinated with EMI Mexico a press conference for Selena in Monterrey.

"We were terrified because Selena didn't know Spanish that well," states Quintanilla. "When we came in, there were 30 - 35 reporters and Selena came in there and hugged each one of them. It took about 20 or 30 minutes. By the time she got through tough, she had them in the palm of her hand.

"They then asked Selena questions in the conference and her answers were completely out from left field. But they laughed and joked with her. The next day in the newspaper they wrote that she was 'una arista del pueblo' or an artist of the people."

While she was wowing the Mexican press, Behar was taking Selena into uncharted pop territory with the duet ballad "Buenos Amigos," recorded with El Salvador's talented singer/songwriter Alvaro Torres. The emotive ballad would shoot to No. 1 on Billboard's Hot Latin Tracks - the first of six chart toppers for Selena. Entre A Mi Mundo ended up scaling Billboard's regional Mexican chart.

By 1993, Selena was a bonafide Tejano superstar who was about to enjoy a breakthrough year. Selena continued to develop her profile in the Latino pop market with "Dondequiera Que Estés," her chugging, pop/dance duet hit with the New York vocal quintet the Barrio Boyzz that became her second No. 1 smash.

Selena released another album, Live!, which became her third straight album to reach the top of Billboard's regional Mexican chart. The album not only yielded a Top-Five single ("No Debes Jugar"), but also garnered Selena her first Grammy. And late in 1993, Behar helped Selena secure a record deal with EMI Records that promised to introduce her to a much wider audience.

With the release of Amor Prohibido in 1994, Selena revealed a broad interest in many types of music, ranging from ranchera ballads to hip-hop. Proof of her soaring popularity came when Amor Prohibido scaled the Billboard Latin 50, establishing the album as the biggest seller in the U.S.

Selena was getting involved in other creative projects, as well. She finally realized her second career goal upon opening a clothing boutique in Corpus Christi. She obtained a small part as a mariachi singer in the film "Don Juan de Marco," which starred Marlon Brando.

Selena also recorded "God's Child (Baila Conmigo)," a stirring English/Spanish duet with David Byrne that is included on her tantalizing new album Dreaming of You.

Assembled jointly by EMI Latin and EMI Records, Dreaming of You contains several of Selena's Latino classics, two previously unreleased Spanish-language, two new English/Spanish duets, and five English-language songs originally slated to be featured on her English-language debut.

The album's five English-language tracks boast the participation of a highly esteemed cast of producers (Keith Thomas, Rhett Lawrence, Guy Roche, Full Force) and songwriters (Diane Warren, Keith Thomas, Desmond Child, Franne Golde, Tom Snow) who were helping to mold Selena's sound toward a pop/r&b direction as alluring as Selena's sinewy voice.

Though always an emotive singer, Selena was scarcely a one dimensional song stylist. She displayed an instinctive ability to convey passion and sentiment in a variety of ways. The first half of Dreaming of You, for instance, spotlights Selena wrapping her creamy, seductive mezzo around slow-grooved love confessionals as "I Could Fall In Love," "Missing My Baby," and the title track.

Donning a more gritty vocal cloak during her pleading take of the smoothly rocking "Captive Heart," Selena reveals a tender toughness at once vulnerable and valiant.

"Wherever You Are," a bilingual remake of the aforementioned Selena/Barrio Boyzz smash "Dondequiera Que Estés" matches Selena's original sassy, Spanish-language vocals with the Barrio Boyzz's textured, English-language rendition.

As a Spanish-language vocalist during the second half of Dreaming of You, Selena again displays an uncanny penchant for applying just the right emotional touch to a vocal situation.

Digging deep into her well of emotion, Selena is at her heartbroken best during two tear-stained mariachi chestnuts, "El Toro Relajo" and "Tú Sólo Tú." Amazingly, Selena quickly reverses field to reveal a playful cooing growl on the dancehall thumper "Techno Cumbia," after which she flexes husky vocal muscle during a reggae-enhanced cover of another Latino chart topper, "Bidi Bidi Bom Bom."

Selena was slain by an ex-employee before she was able to realize her long-cherished ambition of becoming a crossover star. Still, Dreaming of You offers a complete chronicle of Selena's past, as well as a glimpse of where her musical future was heading.

Selena's final performance on February 26th, 1995, drew a crowd of more than 61,000 to the Astrodome in Houston. Her status as a top concert attraction was indisputable. Yet Selena insisted to her father that she continue to perform at smaller venues.

"I remember her saying, 'Look, these are the people that made us,' says Quintanilla. "I don't want to turn my back on them."

And for that, Selena's adoring fans will be eternally grateful and appreciative.