On November 6, 2019, The Songwriters Hall of Fame announced the nominees for induction to its 51st Annual Induction & Awards Gala to be held on June 11, 2020, in New York City. Among the distinguished list of impressive songwriters is none other than the legendary seven-time Grammy Award-winning artist Gloria Estefan. This Cuban American Latina icon has graced us with an impressive catalog of songs loved around the world. “Combined with her voice, Gloria Estefan’s songwriting has made her one of the biggest Latin music crossover stars ever, and the embodiment of the “Miami Sound.”
Gloria Estefan and her producer husband, Emilio Estefan, together have created some of the most long-standing beautiful ballads with heartwarming lyrics as well as put Latino music on the map with their captivating rhythms that transcend around the globe inspiring everyone to get up and dance the night away. Captivating fans around the world with her mesmerizing voice as she brings you along with every beat of the drum is reason enough for this Latina trailblazer to be bestowed with the prestigious honor of being recognized as one, if not the most talented Latina Songwriters of our generation. Below are just a few of the numerous songs Estefan has shared with us over the years that bring back memories of being in love, songs that inspire hope and pride in yourself, and music that paved the way for unforgettable moments on the dance floor of almost every wedding, quince, and Latino party around.
“Don’t Wanna Lose You”
The single “Don’t Wanna Lose You” from the 1989 album Cuts Both Ways is a beautiful ballad expressing those emotions we’ve all felt of not wanting to lose someone. Estefan captivates you with her heartwarming lyrics as the melody embraces you with every tune. The song earned Estefan a Grammy Award nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.
“Words Get in the Way”
From the 1985 Miami Sound Machine Album Primitive Love, “Words Get in the Way” captivated us with the true to heart lyrics Estefan mesmerized us with as the song tells the story of how we sometimes struggle to share our true feelings with the one we love. According to Wikipedia, “The song was their first to crack the Top 5 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, peaking at #5, and became their first number-one hit on Billboard’s Adult Contemporary chart in 1986.”
“Anything For You”
From the 1987 Let it Loose album, “Anything For You” was Gloria Estefan’s and Miami Sound Machine’s first number-one hit in America. A beautiful yet sad and poignant ballad reminding us of the heartbreak that goes along with letting someone you love go and realizing the relationship is over, and it’s time to move on, but the love will always remain in your heart.
“Turn the Beat Around”
The single from the 1994 Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me album is a remake of a Vicky Sue Robinson song, but it’s still worth mentioning as Estefan reintroduced this song with her trademark brand of Latin-infused melodies that had us all jumping up and dancing to its cat-scratch fever, disco-inspired rhythms.
“Rhythm is Gonna Get You”
v“Rhythm is Gonna Get You” from the 1987 Let it Loose album, is the Caribbean infused Latin gem written by Enrique “Kiki” Garcia and Gloria Estefan, and released by Gloria Estefan and the Miami Sound Machine had us all on the dance floor when it hit the airwaves. According to Wikipedia– “It was their fourth Top 10 (and second Top 5) single on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100.”
The song “Conga” from the 1985 Miami Sound Machine album Primitive Love is a national treasure and staple around the world. Who doesn’t know how to Conga? From the opening beat that moves you out of your seat, to the very last lyric, this song is musical rhapsody of Latin beats on Fire! “Conga” became a worldwide phenomenon and is recognized as the signature song of Gloria Estefan and the Miami Sound Machine.
“Get on Your Feet”
The song “Get on Your Feet,” from the 1989 Cuts Both Ways album is a song takes you on an inspirational journey encouraging you to get up and make those dreams happen. The perfect go-to song when you feel like giving up but need a little lift to get you moving again in the right direction.
“Coming Out of the Dark”
“Coming Out of the Dark” from the 1991 album Into the Light is Estefan’s first single after the tragic accident that almost took her life. A ballad showcasing her inspirational voice walking us to the other side of a tragedy, and discovering the light waiting to lift you up and surround you with love. The perfect anthem for those fighting their way back from an injury.
“Mi Tierra” from the 1993 album Mi Tierra comes a beautifully written song full of the pride and Orgullo we feel for our countries. Una canción tan Bella y Hermosa as it pays homage to her beloved Cuba. A song that became an international success for Estefan as it takes us back in time in an equally impressive video reminiscent of the big band era with Estefan playing the part of a supper club singer taking you back to the places and things you will never forget and hold dear to your heart.
“Mas Alla” from the 1995 album Abriendo Puertas is a beautiful ballad once requested by Pope John Paul II for Estefan to sing at the Vatican in celebration of his 50 years as a priest. A timely song to share, especially during Christmas, as it evokes feelings of having more compassion and extending forgiveness and peace with others. To love one another, inspiring a better world for us all.
Honored with countless recognitions over the years, Gloria Estefan is a true Latina Pioneer and legend among the stars whose music has not only inspired us but resonated with countless fans around the world. Parade.com probably shared the best quote from Estefan regarding her talents. – “So, it makes us happy because all we ever heard from everybody was, “It’s not going to work.” “No.” “You are not going to do it.” “You can’t compete in the American market.” “You can’t do this, you can’t do that.” So we want to offer the opposite experience for younger artists and go, “Of course, you can.” “Yes, you can, and we’ll help in whatever way we can.” This is exactly why it’s no surprise The Songwriters Hall Of Fame class of 2020 includes this Latina powerhouse who paved the way and has opened the door wide open for future songwriters waiting in the wings.