Hometown: Havana, Cuba
Celia Cruz, nicknamed The Queen of Salsa, was easily one of the most influential women in Latin music. After moving to New York during the height of the Cuban Revolution, Cruz and many other musicians combined a variety of rhythms, instruments, and their love for the culture to create salsa. With her powerful voice and lively presence, Celia was able to bring Latin music and culture to the attention of many Americans in the early 70’s.
During her life, Celia Cruz recorded a whopping 70 albums, collaborated with artists such as Patti La Belle and Wyclef Jean, won seven Grammys, and starred in many movies that highlighted Latin culture.
Despite her death in 2003, Celia’s lively legacy still lives on today.