Gloria Estefan is a famous American singer and songwriter who is originally from Cuba. Estefan gained worldwide fame and success as well as contributed to the popularization of Latin music. Gloria has recorded fourteen studio albums with her songs, many of which have taken the first lines in the world charts. Estefan has received numerous music awards and was called the Queen of Latin Pop by the media. She is one of the most successful, well-known and best-selling Latin female artists. In addition, Gloria Estefan successfully contributes to the music industry, and she is a talented, ambitious and responsive person, known in other fields as well.
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Gloria Maria Milagrosa Fajardo Garcia was born on September 1, 1957, in Havana, but two years later, her family was forced to flee Cuba. Gloria’s father, Jose Fajardo, was a soldier and member of the president’s Fulgencio Batista guard. The move to the United States was associated with the Cuban Revolution and the conquest of power by the dictator Fidel Castro. After coming to the U.S., Jose participated in failed landing operation in 1961 and was captured. After release from imprisonment, Gloria’s father served for several years in Vietnam with the U.S. Army. Gloria’s childhood and teenage life were not easy, her mother worked and studied, and Jose was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis upon returning from Vietnam. Gloria took care of her father and her younger sister and found relief in music. She had no plans to become a famous pop star, but she was fond of poetry and learned to play the guitar from childhood.
Gloria Estefan attended Catholic schools in Miami, primarily St. Michael-Archangel School and Our Lady of Lourdes Academy as a high school. In her all-girls high school, Estefan was a member of the National Honor Society. In 1979 Gloria Estefan graduated from the University of Miami with a Bachelor of Arts in psychology and a minor in French.
Three Life Events
The first significant event in the life of Gloria was the move to the United States, as otherwise, her life could have turned out differently. The second major event was her acquaintance with Emilio Estefan in 1975, who invited her to become the lead singer in his group, and in 1978 he proposed Gloria to marry. Emilio’s group was called the Miami Latin Boys, but it was renamed the Miami Sound Machine after a while. The group performed songs in Spanish and achieved success in small steps. In 1980 they signed to Discos CBS International and recorded songs in Spanish for a few more years, rapidly gaining success worldwide in Spanish-speaking countries. In 1984, Miami Sound Machine recorded their first album in English and changed CBS to its parent label Epic. A few years later, the band gained significant popularity, and Estefan attracted the most attention in the group. It led to the band’s name being dropped, and Gloria became considered a solo artist.
The third major event in the life of Gloria Estefan was the accident with her tour bus. Gloria was seriously injured, with a fractured spine; she had the risk of never achieving a full recovery. However, after almost a year of rehabilitation, Gloria made a comeback by releasing a new album and launching a tour in support of it. Estefan released twelve more albums in the following years, combining different styles and rhythms in her songs, performing in both English and Spanish.
Current Activity and Major Contributions
Gloria continues to work on songs and record albums; her last album was released in 2020. By making her music, Estefan did not forget about her roots, and through her art, she made Latin motives popular. For her contributions to American music, Gloria received the Presidential Medal of Freedom. She received the Kennedy Center Honors for her contributions to American Culture Life. In addition, she makes donations, opposes dictatorships, and has created the Gloria Estefan Foundation, which supports cultural, educational and health development.