Rivera, who was presumably killed early Sunday in a plane crash in Mexico, was at the peak of her career as perhaps the most successful female singer in grupero, a male-dominated regional style influenced by the norteño, cumbia and ranchero styles.
A 43-year-old mother of five children and grandmother of two, her music resonated with Latinos because she sang about her own difficult experiences—her battle with domestic violence, her struggle with weight, being a single mother and her failed marriages.
The singer was born on July 2, 1969, in Los Angeles, Calif. to Pedro and Rosa Rivera, Mexicans who like decided to pursue their American Dream by moving to the U.S.
The Rivera’s eventually settled in Long Beach, Calif. Little did Don Pedro Rivera, a musician, know that all of his children would make a living in the music business, particularly his daughter Jenni, who rose to become one of the leading female singers in her musical genre.
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Initially, Jenni Rivera had no interest in following her father’s and brothers footsteps in the music industry. She had her first child while still in high school and married the father, José Trinidad Marin, and had two more children with him.
In an interview with Telemundo, Rivera spoke about how Marin physically abused her because while she wanted to attend college, he wanted her to quit school and be at home “cooking and cleaning.” She said she grew up with four brothers so she knew how to fight back.
The rocky relationship, however, went from bad to worse when Rivera found out that Marin had sexually abused her younger sister and one of her daughters. For years, Marin ran from authorities, but was later caught in April of 2006 and was convicted on various sexual assault and rape counts.
Soon after, Rivera was on welfare, struggling to support her three children, Janney “Chiquis” Marín Rivera, Jacqueline Marín Rivera, and Michael Marín Rivera. She dabbled in real estate then took a second job in her father’s record label, Cintas Acuario, which led to discovering her voice and path in the world of Regional/Banda/Norteño music.
In 1995, Rivera decided to change career paths and signed with Capitol/EMI’s Latin division. That same year she released her breakthrough album Chacalosa, which sold over a million copies. Rivera later switched to the Latin division at Sony records. In 1999, Rivera signed with Fonovosa—the leading regional music record label. Read the full article on FOX NEWS Latino.