Gloria Estefan
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Gloria Estefan honored for her Latin roots

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It’s no surprise to anyone, that Gloria Estefan has made an everlasting impact on the music industry. She’s one of the first pop artists, who’s managed to get Latin music to cross over to mainstream pop. You could even argue that she opened the door of success to every Latin super star who followed.


For Gloria it was a cover of a Spanish ballad that really launched her career. She was the front woman for the Miami Sound Machine, originally her husband’s band, when she entered the US Latin charts. The band later would name themselves “Gloria Estefan & The Miami Sound Machine”, spotting the star potential in Gloria.


In 1984 they switched to English and success followed in unexpected places. It was Europe that saw the potential of the band first. The US quickly followed.


Then, hits like ”Bad Boy”, “Conga”, “Dr. Beat”, “Anything for you”, “Don’t wanna lose you”, “Can’t stay away from you”, “The Rhythm is Gonna Get You” and many more followed. Actually, the list of hits is endless, really. Most songs all stayed true to Latin musical influences, and blended them with pop music.


Within no time, no one spoke of the Miami Sound Machine anymore and Gloria Estefan was seen as a solo artist. Her legacy definitely lies in making Latin accessible for everyone, but everyone will definitely credit her equally for her ballads. They were usually her biggest hits. 


Gloria Estefan wrote or co-wrote most of her material herself and even wrote music for commercials, and of course other artists. She had a hand in the breakthrough of artists like Shakira, Ricky Martin and Jennifer Lopez, for whom she wrote songs early on in their careers. After all, she was an expert on how to cross over to English and the mainstream charts.


The story of Gloria Estefan and husband Emilio, who are a true power couple in the music industry, has been inspiring enough to spark a musical. It opened this year, in New York, on Broadway. The Estefans even wrote two new songs especially for the musical.


Recently, the couple were honored by none other than president Barack Obama, who presented them the Presidential Medal of Freedom for promoting their Latin heritage globally. It’s the highest honor that someone could receive as a United States civilian.


Though Emilio and Gloria have not retired from music at all, the next generation in the Estefan family is gearing up to take over. Teen daughter Emily has joined Gloria on stage before and has now started performing on her own.