Nearly 30 years since her tragic death, the family of the enduring Latina pop icon Selena released a new single, a remix of a 1987 song that's part of an upcoming posthumous album, “Moonchild Mixes.”
As expected, the song’s release and the coming album have elicited strong responses — both in favor and against — from the legions of fans of the late Queen of Tejano’s music.
“I’m all for it,” Matthew Tienda, 30, of San Antonio, said about the song, “Como Te Quiero Yo A Ti,” or “The Way I Love You,” an orchestral mariachi ballad that has already clinched the No. 1 spot on iTunes’ Música Mexicana charts in the U.S. and Canada.
“She’s one of the biggest what-ifs in the music industry,” Tienda said. “We would’ve wanted to see what she could surpass — she was about to be huge.”
A Twitter user was “sobbing” over the newly released song, citing Selena as an inspiration. Another expressed excitement for the coming album.
But other fans don’t share that view.
A Twitter user wrote that the posthumous album was “distasteful” and that it was a way for Selena’s family to profit using her name almost three decades later. Another Twitter user wrote that the newly remixed song was made for “money grabbing.”
Caroline Salinas, 24, a fan for 20 years, grew up listening to Selena, owned the Selena Barbie Doll and visited the Selena Museum in Selena’s hometown, Corpus Christi, Texas.
The new single reminded Salinas of Selena’s roots and her original sound early on in her career. “It’s very different from the hits we’re used to, which is like the pop Selena,” she said.
Although Salinas anticipates the new album, she said Selena’s family should “let her rest.”
“Let her legacy be what she left behind for us. ... It feels kind of exploitive to create something new, instead of finding new ways to celebrate what she was.”
Still, she's willing to give the album a chance. “I’m excited to see what they come up with and if it changes my mind on how they honor her legacy,” Salinas said.
Selena, a bicultural and bilingual singing sensation, was fatally shot in 1995 at the age of 23 by Yolanda Saldivár, the former president of her fan club and former manager of the Selena Etc. boutiques.
The coming album, in collaboration with Warner Music Latina, is expected to feature 13 songs that will chronicle Selena’s career. Selena’s father, Abraham Quintanilla, is the executive producer.
It will feature new songs with never-before-heard vocal recordings when Selena was ages 13 to 16.
“Twenty-six years later the public still remembers Selena. They haven’t let go of her,” Quintanilla said in a March interview with Latin Groove News. “They’re waiting for a project like this to come out, and I know it will be well-received by the public.”
Selena’s vocals were digitally modified by her brother, the Grammy-winning producer and songwriter A.B. Quintanilla, to closely resemble her voice as it sounded before her death. The album’s art will be created by Selena’s sister, Suzette, according to Latin Groove News.
“As an artist and musicians and people that are in the public eye, you have to turn that off,” Suzette recently told ABC News’ John Quiñones in response to a question about criticism and taking advantage of Selena’s legacy.
“We’re still going to do what we want with our music, with our sister, with our band, and I hope people understand that,” Suzette said.
Selena’s official Instagram account wrote a week before the single's release: “Fall in love with Selena all over again with brand new arrangements beautifully curated for her fans.”
The last original Selena track, titled “Oh No (I’ll Never Fall In Love Again),” was released in 2015.
The handling and ownership of Selena's music and her story have been topics of controversy.
A yearslong legal battle over the right to produce content based on Selena's life between Selena's estate and Chris Perez, her widower, was resolved last year.
More recently, some fans have expressed their frustrations over a recent Netflix series about Selena's life and career, which portrayed a Selena unlike the one in the beloved 1997 movie "Selena," which starred Jennifer Lopez in her breakout role.
Selena's posthumous album is set to release Aug. 26.