It's been 25 years since Selena was tragically taken from us. I was interviewed a few weeks ago about how I became a fan and what she means to me. Although I talk about her often online I still feel like I can't express enough the impact she has had on my life and the inspiration I've gotten from her, she is like a muse guiding her fans! Here is the article that was published today.
Selena inspired some to learn Spanish, pursue professional dreams For Marie Beland, Selena inspired her career.
As a teenager in the ’90s, Beland lived in northern California and worked at a Carl’s Jr. Surrounded by Spanish speakers, she picked up foreign words here and there.
She tuned into the Univision show “Control” one day in 1994 and saw Selena’s music video for “Amor Prohibido.” Beland liked the song, but this was before the internet boomed; Beland couldn’t just Google the young singer.
Then, in 1995, Beland arrived home from school to find her grandmother watching the news. Selena had been killed. The TV station showed a clip of the “Amor Prohibido” video, and Beland connected the dots.
In the following months, Beland cried whenever she heard Selena’s songs on the radio. She saw the 1997 movie starring Jennifer López, and Selena’s story inspired her.
Beland began collecting magazines featuring the singer. She got her first computer in 2000; with her discovery of eBay, her magazine collection grew. She began scanning the photos of Selena and uploading them to an MSN.com group for posterity. That group became so popular among MSN users that Beland created her own website. She used photo editing software to make Selena-themed desktop wallpapers.
Eventually, she realized she wanted to be a graphic designer.
“I used my love for Selena to practice my design skills, and anytime I could incorporate her into my school projects, I did,” said Beland, who is now 41 and lives in Atlanta, Georgia.
Selena was also one reason Beland decided to teach herself Spanish. Beland now speaks the language fluently and can sing along to Selena’s songs.
There was a lot to love about Selena, Beland said: her unique voice, her unforced sexuality, her ability to appeal to different generations and cultures.
“In another 20, 30 years, we’re still going to love her just as much as we do now,” Beland said. “She really touched people when she was around, and her fans have been passing that on to their kids. I don’t have kids yet, but hopefully, I will soon, and they’re going to know who she is.”