Reviewed by Belinda Acosta, Fri., May 14, 2010
SelenaLa Leyenda (Capital Latin/EMI)
The electroni-fried brassiness of Tejano music makes many music lovers cringe, but Selena, queen of Tejano music, was on the brink of a crossover into the mainstream. It's been a decade since the 23-year-old Texan's tragic murder, and books (including a fine academic tome by UT professor Deborah Paredez, Selenidad: Selena, Latinos, and the Performance of Memory), a 1997 feature film starring Jennifer Lopez, a documentary (Corpus: A Home Movie for Selena), and even a musical (Selena Forever) mark her death. The most lasting testament to Selena is her music. The 4-CD La Leyenda is divided into four thematic platters. Cumbias y Pop stars cloyingly catchy hit "Bidi Bidi Bom Bom" along with early hit "Amor Prohibido," plus the infectiously danceable "Techno Cumbia" and what would become her signature song, "Como la Flor." Tejano y Rancheras is a Tejano music fan's treasure chest, featuring 24 cuts including mariachi standard "Tu, Solo Tu." The girl could sing! Disc three features many of the songs that brought her posthumous attention from English-speaking audiences: "I Could Fall in Love," "Missing My Baby," "Dreaming of You," and 13 other cuts. The Live disc features songs from the previous three discs performed in concert, with the addition of the retro treat "Disco Medley." Selena and Tejano music fans already understand La Leyenda – the Legacy – but crossover appeal will begin here for the newcomer.