Celia Cruz

Cuban Singer
October 21, 1925 – July 16, 2003 • Salsa, Guaracha, Rumba, Afro, Son and Bolero

Fast Facts

  • Cuban singer of Latin music.
  • One of the eldest among fourteen children, and she used to sing cradle songs to put them to sleep.
  • According to her mother, she began singing as a child at 9 or 10 months of age, often in the middle of the night.
  • The most popular Latin artist of the 20th century, she earned twenty-three gold albums and was a recipient of the National Medal of Arts.
  • Throughout her career, she was awarded numerous prizes and distinctions, including two Grammy Awards and three Latin Grammy Awards.
  • Renowned internationally as the “Queen of Salsa”, “La Guarachera de Cuba”, as well as “The Queen of Latin Music.”
  • While growing up in Cuba’s diverse 1930s musical climate, Cruz listened to many musicians who influenced her adult career, including Fernando Collazo, Abelardo Barroso, Pablo Quevedo and Arsenio Rodríguez.