Remember When? Jenni Rivera Owned Mariachi With 'La Gran Señora'
As the fifth anniversary of Jenni Rivera's death approaches, her indomitable Southland Latina spirit lives on. Both commercially and with her unique human touch, La Diva de la Banda's star continues to rise and her smile continues to shine worldwide as it does from the murals of Jenni Rivera Memorial Park in her native Long Beach, Calif.
Having grown up in her father's local record store, Rivera showed a unique flair and expertise in regional styles of Latin music that thrill California Southland audiences, workplaces, parties, and quinceañeras. Bilingual, she imbued hits in English and traditional Latina classics with her own touch, offending purists and converting fans who feel connected with her to this day. Her artistic progress evolved from ranchera through banda as a woman in a man's genre, and proved itself with mariachi with the 2009 release of La Gran Señora.
A consistently wonderful performer, many have raised a glass of her Jenni Rivera La Gran Señora Reposado Tequila in her memory. La Gran Señora was nominated for a 2010 Latin GRAMMY for Best Ranchero Album and the following year La Gran Señora En Vivo was nominated in the Best Banda Album category.
"In order to record mariachi, people need to believe it," Rivera told Billboard. "And how will they believe it if you haven't lived it? So I needed to live it, I guess, first, and then express it throughout the recording."
In 2013 the GRAMMY Museum launched an exhibit dedicated to the the life and career of Rivera. Today, her image, television and film work, and love of music are celebrated and augmented by the ongoing charity work of the Jenni Rivera Love Foundation.