30+ Selena Quintanilla Quotes About Music, Being Mexican and Her Ambition

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

There are only a handful of talented musicians who can get away with going by just one name, and Selena Quintanilla-Pérez is one of them. The Mexican-American singer, known as the Queen of Tejano Music or simply just La Reina to her most devoted fans, is best known for songs like “Bidi Bidi Bom Bom,” “Como La Flor,” “Si Una Vez” and so many more hits. Jennifer Lopez played her in the 1997 biopic, Selena, however, Quintanilla was a star in her own right before that even premiered.

Selena made a name for herself in the Tejano music scene, which was notably male-dominated, and took it over at the time with her popularity despite not speaking fluent Spanish. She was already a darling to Mexican and Latine listeners and was just beginning to bust into the mainstream music scene after winning Best Mexican/American Album at the 1994 Grammys. Selena was at the height of her career and in the middle of recording her first-ever English crossover album, which would have truly brought her into mainstream pop when she was tragically murdered. On March 31, 1995, Selena’s former friend and manager of Quintanilla’s Selena Etc. boutiques, Yolanda Saldívar, shot and killed Selena after being caught stealing funds from Quintanilla’s businesses. Selena was only 23 at the time, a little over two weeks away from her 24th birthday on April 16.

After her death, Selena’s music gained even more popularity and she became the first Latin artist to debut on the Billboard 200 with her posthumous crossover album, Dreaming of You. The governor of Texas at the time, George W. Bush, officially declared April 16 as Selena Day in Texas. But for fans of Selena around the world, every April 16 is Selena Day. She was known for her infectious laugh and smile, her gorgeous voice, her humor and her tenacity. Her death left a void for her fans, her loved ones and the music industry she was torn from.

So, in honor of the beloved Tejano music star and her birthday, here are the 30+ best Selena Quintanilla quotes.

Related: Where Is Selena's Sister Suzette Quintanilla Now?

32 Selena Quintanilla Quotes

<p>TARA ZIEMBA/AFP via Getty Images / Canva</p>

TARA ZIEMBA/AFP via Getty Images / Canva

1. "If you’re going to be somebody, you need to be a leader and not a follower. The impossible is always possible and you don’t need anybody else to tell you that you’re good."

2. "I feel very proud to be Mexican. I didn't have the opportunity to learn Spanish when I was a girl, but... it's never too late to get in touch with your roots."

3. "One of the most important things, for me, is to have my family by my side, supporting me and have that love. For me, love is super important because money comes and goes but love lasts for such a long time, for the rest of your life."

4. "If you have a dream, don't let anybody take it away, and always believe that the impossible is possible."

5. "When I'm singing, I'm another person. I can be really free, in the sense that I can do whatever I want."

6. "When love hits you, it hits you and you don't expect it."



7. "You have to take what you can get when you're getting started."

8. "Tejano music was hard for us because I was a girl. My dad had a lot of problems while trying to set up shows for us or presentations because there are a lot of men who don't think that women can get the attention of the public. But... wrong!"

9. "The reason I'm really appreciative of everything that's going on around me is because of the fact that I never expected it, and I want to keep that attitude."

10. "It’s great to have everybody, especially Hispanics, getting back to their roots and listening to Spanish music and it’s a start, getting back to learning the language. That’s how I learned it, literally. Because I actually learned English before I learned Spanish."

11. "All I need to do is try and do the best that I can do."

12. "I’m very simple. I like the finer things in life but because we have gone through some tough times in life I am able to enjoy the simpler things in life."

13. "We went through a hard time, and we had to turn to music as a means of putting food on the table. And we've been doing it ever since. No regrets either."

14. "We never thought we'd get this far, but we're here."

15. "It’s really cool to kind of have people come to me and get excited, you know, I don’t see myself that way. And I get excited when I see other artists."



Related: Did Beyoncé Meet Selena In Real Life or Only For 'Selena: The Series'?

16. "Not only as an entertainer but as a person who cared a lot and I gave the best that I could, and I’ve tried to be the best role model that I possibly could and the best person that I could be." — Selena on how she wants to be remembered.

17. "If you work hard to achieve your goals, the rest it’s really easy"

18. "Well, when I am singing I am a completely different person. I could be very free, depending on the situation I could do what I want."

19. "I’m very real, very sincere, and honest, and that’s how I’ll always be."

20. "You shouldn’t care for somebody just because of the materialistic things that they have and I’m a firm believer in that."

21. "We got laughed at. My father was told that we would never make it. It's gradual, a growing process. It's not like it came overnight."

22. "I don’t feel pressure because I’m not trying to portray something that I’m not."

23. "With a positive attitude, you can be anything you want to be."



24. "Anybody can be a role model."

25. "The family that plays together stays together."

26. "Yes. I love Texas. I’m a Texas girl. I am Texan. I really like Corpus because it’s really laid back... When I go other places, I’m working, and I’m enjoying meeting people, but when I go home, that’s my time to be myself, and relax.”

27. "Our culture is very beautiful. It’s very romantic. Spanish is a very romantic language. It’s the language of love. I think it’s very sad if we forget where we come from. Because we are who we are. I think the color or our skin is beautiful. I think people should be proud of that."



28. "And you have to be grateful to the public in that way to give autographs if they want an autograph, you give them an autograph! It’s not going to take very much of your time, I do it!… Because I know that without the fans and the public, we wouldn’t be where we are today. I am really conscious of that fact that they made us what we are."

29. "I hope to make a lot of people happy with my music. I hope people understand that when I sing my songs, I am not only singing them because I like to sing them, but I am singing them because I want to touch somebody’s heart. In our music, the words have a strong message and somewhere out there somebody’s going through something. And if I can touch somebody in that way, that’s the ultimate."

30. "The most important is that the people accept me for my music, not for physical appearances."

31. "It’s got polka in it, a little bit of country, a little bit of jazz. Fuse all those types of music together. I think that’s where you get Tejano."

32. "And, with a lot of promoters—and it still exists, although not as much as before–there’s the issue of machismo. They would tell my father straight to his face, “Not only is she too young, but there’s no way she could draw like a male artist."

Next up: 50+ Most Influential Latin American Women in History for Hispanic Heritage Month