How Well Do You Remember Selena?

By: Monica Lee
Image: SelenaVEVO

About This Quiz

Selena was a vibrant, gorgeous, talented musical icon who represented the energy and soul of Tejano music. Most of her albums and singles skyrocketed to the top of the Hot Latin Tracks and Latin Pop Song Charts. Although she grew up speaking English, she learned Spanish and spoke to so many Hispanics in the South through her upbeat and heart rendering lyrics. Yes, her music was of great importance and joy, but there was so much more to Selena than just her magnificent voice. Find out more about the “Mexican Madonna” by taking the quiz now. 


What were your favorite songs? "Tú, Sólo Tú"? "Si Una Vez"? "Bidi Bidi Bom Bom"? There are simply too many to list. The popularity of her music was legendary with two of her albums going gold. Selena amazed the world by being the first Tejano artist ever to win a Grammy Award. She recorded her cross-over album, ready to take on the rest of the world, when was killed by the founder of her fan club. Her premature death saddened the country and was a major loss to fans everywhere. How much do you recall about her life, her music, and her untimely death? Find out by clicking below.


Favorite Song! What is the name of the whimsical track with a catchy dance beat?

"Bidi Bidi Bom Bom" took the #1 spot on the Hot Latin Tracks and the #11 spot on Latin Pop Songs in 1994. The catchy Cumbia, Latin pop and Caribbean reggae beat made it unstoppable on the way to the top. This was the second single released from Amor Prohibido,

What was the name of Selena's first band?

Selena y Los Dinos is the first band in which Selena sang. The band was comprised of her family and she was the lead singer. According to Selena, "We went through a hard time, and we had to turn to music as a means to putting food on the table. And we've been doing it ever since. No regrets either."

Favorite Song! What popular Selena song is about a woman who must wish her ex-lover and his new lover happiness, as her heart aches for him?

"No Me Queda Más" or “I Have Nothing Left” came in as #1 on the Hot Latin Tracks and #13 on the Latin Pop Airplay. This perfect Selena song highlights her heartrending vocals on this tragic ballad.

At what age did Selena become lead singer in the family's band?

Selena started singing at age 6, but around the age of 10, she became the lead singer in her family's band. The band started slowly, first playing weddings and clubs in their native Texas. However, as their popularity grew, their father, a former musician, managed and produced the group.

What is the name of Selena's first album that went gold?

Her 1990 album, Ven Conmigo, was the first Tejano record to achieve gold record status. This was a substantial accomplishment because it meant that Selena sold more than 500,000 copies. Photographed in black and white, the album cover was very artistic. However, there was another reason it was photographed in this manner. Selena dyed her hair jet black the night before and got some dye on her face.

When was Selena born?

Selena was born April 16, 1971. To commemorate her birthday, celebrations still take place today. That's because shortly after her death, George W. Bush, who was Governor of Texas at the time, declared April 16th as Selena Day.

Favorite Song! Another single was released from Amor Prohibido that empowered the inner female rebel, what was the song's title?

"Si Una Vez" or in English, “If Once" reached the #18 spot on the Peak Billboard of the Hot Latin Tracks. This was the fifth single released from Amor Prohibido. It describes how you should tell your bad boyfriend to take a hike and let him know that he was a waste of your time.

What were Selena's nicknames?

Selena was Queen of Tejano music, which is a type of folk-based music that blends pop and country sounds. Tejano music is also called Tex-Mex music. Selena was also called the Mexican Madonna because of her sexy outfits and her strong stage presence which was similar to Madonna.

Favorite Song! What song was Selena’s debut English crossover single?

In 1995, "I Could Fall in Love" took the #2 position on Hot Latin Tracks, the #1 position on Latin Pop, and #8 on the Hot 100 Airplay. The song became her signature song for her English debut. The ballad was melancholy and showcased an emotional vulnerability to her music.

How many brothers and sisters did Selena have?

The youngest of three kids, Selena was born into a working-class Mexican-American home with an older brother and sister. Her father, who had to put his musical career on hold to provide for his family, noticed that Selena had perfect pitch and began managing and producing the family's band.

For which album did Selena win a Grammy Award?

Selena won the Grammy Award for best Mexican-American album in 1993 for Selena Live! These awards, along with her huge number of album sales, illustrate the tremendous impact she had on pop culture.

What instrument did Selena's sister play?

Suzette, Serena's older sister, played the drums. According to a video on Biography.com, Suzette hated playing the drums from day one because there were no other female drummers, and she felt out of place. However, her parents wanted her to be part of the band and she had no choice. Suzette, who helps run her late sister’s estate along with her father, has made it her life's mission to keep Selena’s memory alive.

Favorite Song! Which single released from "Amor Prohibido" ended up #1 on the Hot Latin Tracks?

"Fotos y Recuerdos" or in English: “Photos and Memories” took the #1 position on the Hot Latin Tracks. The fourth single released from Amor Prohibido had many similar chords as the Pretenders’ classic, "Back on the Chain Gang.” It became one of her biggest and best-known​ dance songs.

What instrument did Selena's brother play?

Her brother, Abraham, played bass guitar. The original members of Selena y Los Dinos (1986) included Selena, Suzette, Abraham, Ricky Vela, and Roger García. Selena's husband, Chris Perez, said he didn't initially notice Selena had a budding crush on him until her older brother, A.B. (Abraham) Quintanilla, tipped him off.

What language(s) did Selena speak growing up?

Selena grew up speaking English, but her father taught her to sing in Spanish so she could better relate to and represent the entire Latino community. She learned the lyrics phonetically at first, and eventually speaking Spanish became second nature to her.

Favorite Song! What is the name of the soft, romantic single released from Selena's album, "Entre a Mi Mundo."

In 1992, "Como La Flor" ​or “Like a Flower” took the #6 spot on the Hot Latin Tracks. As the second single released from her album, "Entre a Mi Mundo," this song showcased her rich, deep voice and heartbreaking vulnerability that only a multi-dimensional artist can bring to a song.

What is Selena's full married name?

Selena did not have a middle name. Selena Quintanilla became Selena Quintanilla-Perez when she married her band's lead guitarist, Chris Perez. She was 23 years old at the time. Selena and her husband purchased 10 acres of land in Texas, where they were going to build a farm and live on it. Due to her premature death,​ this dream was never realized.

Another of her albums went gold in 1994. Which album was it?

Amor Prohibido was the fourth studio album by Selena, released on March 13, 1994. It went gold that same year. The hits included the eloquent "Amor Prohibido,"about love that shouldn't be, and the fun, rowdy and dance-able "Bidi Bidi Bom Bom." There were so many wonderful songs on that album, including two cumbias, "Cobarde" and "El Chico."

Which Hollywood celebrity starred in a movie about Selena?

Selena's life story became a 1997 film which starred Jennifer Lopez as the Tejano superstar and Edward James Olmos as her father. Jennifer Lopez considered Selena her main musical influence. Lopez also said she identified with Selena as a singer and a woman.

How else is Selena honored in Corpus Christi?

There has been much outpouring of love for Selena and her music since her death. George W. Bush, Governor of Texas at the time, declared April 16 as Selena Day. In 1995, the Houston City Council unanimously voted to rename Denver Park to Selena Quintanilla Perez Park. And the Selena Museum, built by the Quintanilla family as a memorial for Selena fans, is dedicated to everything Selena.

Favorite Song! What is the name of the super-popular 1994 song about star-crossed lovers?

"Amor Prohibido," or in English, “Forbidden Love," was the 1994 hit from the album of the same name. It took the #1 position on the Hot Latin Tracks. Selena's rich, vibrant voice made this love song about forbidden fruit shoot to the top of the charts.

Beside singing, what was one of Selena's biggest interests?

Selena enjoyed having her own sense of style, which some called eccentric and unusual. She enjoyed making her own clothes and would sew accessories, like beads, onto existing items to change their appearance. She often spoke about becoming a fashion designer.

Showing her huge diverse musical background, on which single can you hear some early ‘90s pop and house music?

In 1993, "Amame," or the English, "Love Me," scored lower on the Hot Latin Tracks at #17. Released as the final track from her 'Entre a Mi Mundo' album, this underrated single was a departure from her signature sound and was instead heavily influenced by early ‘90s pop and house music.

Who did Selena marry?

Chris Perez was Selena's first and last love. He was her first boyfriend. When Chris wanted to marry her, Selena's father did not approve. So, the couple eloped. In 1992, Selena took enough of a break from her hectic schedule to marry Chris.

Which remixed song was heard at every wedding, quinceañera, and family get-together in the '90's?

"Techno Cumbia" reached the #1 position on the Hot Latin Tracks and the #13 position on Latin Hot Airplay. Originally released in 1994 as the seventh single off the album, "Amor Prohibido," the song was remixed and re-released in 1995 as a B-side to her posthumous single, “Dreaming of You,” where it became an even bigger hit.

Who said this: "We never thought we'd get this far, but we're here."

Selena never took for granted her fame and fortune. Since she had been singing since she was 10 years old, she already had 10 years of hard work under her belt when fame came calling. In fact, she also said, "When you get hard work, you get success, and we put a lot of years into it."

Which of these is a song from "Amor Prohibido" that did not get much airplay?

"El Chico del Apartamento 512," or "The Guy in Apartment 512," did not chart due to its untimely release from the album, "Amor Prohibido." This dancy, catchy song was released on March 30, 1995, one day before Selena was murdered.

Does Selena have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame?

Selena was posthumously honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on November 3, proclaimed "Selena Day" in Los Angeles by Mayor Eric Garcetti. Selena lives on through her music, the film about her life, murals, illustrations, wax figures, tribute concerts, apparel, and more. She remains a cultural icon among Latinx.

What hit song was intended to be in the soundtrack of a movie?

"Siempre Hace Frio," or “It’s Always Cold,” peaked at #2 on the Hot Latin Tracks. Selena had a small role as a mariachi singer in the 1995 film, "Don Juan DeMarco." "Siempre Hace Frio" was meant to be included on the soundtrack for the film. Once it was released to the public, her fans noted how the song was beautifully written and its vocals had a timeless quality​.

What was the last project Selena was working on before she died?

Selena went to work on an English-language album that she hoped would put her on the top of the U.S. pop music charts. "Dreaming of You," was released after her death and became a huge hit. In fact, it was one of the fastest-selling albums by a female singer in pop history.

In what year did Selena die?

Selena died on March 31, 1995, in Corpus Christi, Texas. Yolanda Saldivar was found guilty of Selena's murder in a Houston trial and is serving her sentence at the Mountain View Unit in Gatesville, TX. She will be eligible for parole in March of 2025.

What was Selena's favorite collectible item?

Selena had an extensive Faberge egg collection that numbered more than 500! All of the eggs are on display in their original cases at the Q-Production Selena Museum. They are arranged exactly the way they were in Selena's living room. Each one had a sentimental value to h​er.

Who killed Selena?

Selena first came to know Yolanda Saldivar when Saldivar became the founder of the Selena Fan Club. Saldivar also managed Sena's boutique in San Antonio and was found embezzling money. After the Quintanilla family confronted her, Saldívar bought a gun, lured Selena to a motel room, and shot her in the back.

What was Selena's favorite car?

Selena once drove a black BMW but it was stolen and dumped into the ocean. She replaced it with her legendary red Porsche Targa that can be seen in a museum in Corpus Christi, Texas, dedicated to Selena's life and music.

Which single from the album, "Dreaming of You," quickly reached the top of the charts?

"Tú, Sólo Tú," or "You, Only You," was #1 on the Hot Latin Tracks. This was the second single off Selena's album, "Dreaming of You," that was released after her death. The song is a beautiful cover of the classic Pedro Infante track.

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