Words by Qadirah Abdur-Rahman


When you type in Google today, you will most likely run into a dazzling animated singing cartoon in celebration of the late Mexican-American singer Selena Quintanilla-Perez.

The doodle features one of Selena’s greatest hit songs called “Bidi bidi bom bom,” and the one minute video tells the story of the singer’s popular music career. Her love for performing and singing as a little girl is expressed while she sings into her hairbrush or “pretended microphone,” in the cartoon. The video also demonstrates her father’s dedication and the effort he put into amplifying his family’s impact in music. Overall, this Google tribute reveals how Selena ultimately became one of the most sought after Latin American artists of her time.

Who is Selena Quintanilla-Perez?

Now an everlasting icon in Tejano and mainstream Latino music, the singer was born on April, 16th 1971 in Lake Jackson, Texas. Noticed by her father of her incredible singing abilities at only age 5, she became the lead singer of her family’s band Selena Y Los Dinos at age 10.

When she first began her career touring with her family in the 1980’s, she sung in her first language English. Her father eventually convinced her to learn Spanish so that she could master gaining a connection with her Latino audience. Her talent, beauty and charming English and Spanish vocals grew her popularity and made her a star!

Why today? Well Google decided to premiere a tribute to the beautiful well known Latin singer Tuesday October 17th, because on October 17th in 1989 Selena’s first studio album released. Today marks the 28th anniversary and the Global Marketing Lead for Google Doodles, Perla Campos collaborated with her family to organize the tribute.

“The little details I gave…that Selena had red nail polish on instead of bright pink. That she had hoop earrings. They even put red on the microphone the way she used to have it,” Suzette Quintanilla, Selena’s sister, told Billboard. “Featuring an immigrant woman should not be political, it should be celebrated.”

The Tejano singer was only 23 years old when she died on March 31, 1995, after the president of her fan club Yolanda Saldívar, shot her in a hotel room. Twenty-two years later, Selena’s true fans still mourn her untimely death.