Who says patience doesn’t pay? It definitely
for music superstar Jon Secada. He started as a background singer
for Gloria Estefan. Secada has become a big star. He is also very popular in
the mainstream English-language market.
Secada is an only child. He came to the US when he was eight years old. His
success story was like many Cuban immigrants who came to Miami after Cuba’s
Communist revolution. “I worked in my parents’
diner,” Secada says.
“I was really a good kid. We all had to do our
progress, to get the family back on its feet and succeed in our adopted
But music soon became more interesting to Secada. “By the time I was in high
school, I knew that I was going to have a career in music,” he says. He got
his master’s degree in jazz vocal performance from the University of Miami,
the country’s top university in that
After graduation, Secada
voice and singing at local clubs. “It was then that
Secada says. “Emilio and Gloria Estefan discovered me. They
me as a songwriter. I knew this was my ticket to bigger and
better things.” Secada was on his way to becoming a star. The chemistry with
the Estefans could not have been better. Secada wrote hit song after hit
song for Gloria, and Emilio helped him start his
Emilio is an excellent businessman. Many people think that he is a
promotional and organizational genius. Emilio took Gloria from playing
(similar to ‘Sweet 16’ birthday celebrations) in Miami to becoming a
superstar. Emilio also knew Jon could be a star. Emilio followed a similar
formula for success that he used with Gloria.
He helped Jon begin his career as a solo artist in 1991. In 1993, Jon Secada
went on to win a Grammy Award, music’s highest honour, for ‘Best Latin Pop
Album’ for Just Another Day Without You. Three years later, he won
his second for Love.
Jon’s albums show his maturity
as an artist. “I wrote the songs on the albums when I was
engaged to Maritere.
The songs on the album are
relationship songs. Some songs are about loss, but they are also about new
beginnings,” he says.
It has been a long road from his parents’ diner to performing in the world’s
most important concert halls. “I’ve never forgotten where I started and
where I came from,” Secada says. “Music was always my world. I was good at
music and I always loved it. All I ever wanted to do was write music and
make my family and community
By all accounts,
Jon Secada has achieved his goal.