Jon Secada

  • Cuban-American pop/latin R&B singer and songwriter born Juan Francisco Secada Ramirez in 1961 in Havana Cuba.
  • When Secada was a boy, his father was imprisoned in Cuba for three years for protesting the communist government. At the age of nine, Secada’s family was granted political asylum and they moved to Miami, where they ran a coffee shop. While in Miami, he listened to the diverse music of the city, influenced by latin-pop music that was so prevalent. Secada performed in high school theater, and he was encouraged to consider a career in music by his teachers. He attended the University of Miami’s School of Music, receiving a Bachelor’s Degree in Music, and a Master’s Degree in jazz vocal performance in 1986, graduating cum-laude.
  • After receiving his master’s degree, he taught music at Miami Dade College for five years. While teaching, some of his acquaintances at U of M introduced him to Emilio Estefan, a member of the group Miami Sound Machine and husband to Gloria Estefan. Estefan heard a demo that Secada had recorded, and subsequently Estefan became Secada’s mentor and manager. By the late 80s, Secada was singing backing vocals at Miami Sound Machine’s concerts.
  • In 1991, Secada co-wrote six songs for Gloria Estefan’s multi-platinum album Into the Light, including the #1 hit Coming Out of the Dark. This increased his profile, and he was signed to a recording contract. In 1992, he released his debut album, the self-titled Jon Secada. Later that year, the album was released in Spanish, titled Otra Día Más Sin Verte. The English version reached #15 on the Billboard Album chart and #1 on the Latin Pop Albums chart, while the Spanish version peaked at #4 on the Latin Pop Albums chart and it won the Grammy award for Best Latin Pop Album. The English version ultimately was certified 3x platinum. Three singles from the English version were top 20 hits, with Just Another Day reaching #5 on the Hot 100 and #2 on the Adult Contemporary charts. Do You Believe In Us and Angel both peaked at #3 on the Adult Contemporary chart. Meanwhile, four singles reached #1 on the Hot Latin Songs chart – Otra Día Más Sin Verte, Cree En Nuestro Amor, Angel and Sentir. 
  • Secada developed a smooth mix of both English and Spanish R&B and pop music with a Latin flavor which appealed to many audiences, and with his debut album he became one of the most successful adult contemporary artists of the decade. In 1994, he released his second English album, Heart, Soul & a Voice and second Spanish album, Si Te Vas. The songs had more of an R&B sound compared to the Latin pop of his first album. All but one of the songs from the Spanish album were translations of songs from the English album. The English version was certified platinum, with the song If You Go peaking at #10 on the Hot 100 and #2 on the Adult Contemporary charts. The Spanish version Si Te Vas topped the Hot Latin Songs chart.
  • His 1995 album Amor was only released in Spanish. He won his second Latin Grammy award for the album, and the single Es Por Ti peaked at #5 on the Hot Latin Songs chart. 1997’s Secada album was well received by critics but it was a commercial disappointment – Two Late Too Soon/Amándolo reached #8 on the Adult Contemporary chart and #10 on the Hot Latin Songs chart, but other singles were not successful. He switched record companies after this, and wrote songs for other artists like Ricky Martin and Jennifer Lopez.
  • Secada expanded into musical theater in the 90s. In 1995, he performed in Grease on Broadway, and in 2003 and 2004 he performed in Cabaret and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Between 2000 and 2017, he released ten albums. He was a judge for all four seasons of Latin American Idol which was filmed in Argentina and broadcast throughout all of Latin America. Secada created the Jon Secada Music Scholarship at the University of Miami, and he was involved in many other charities. Here’s the video to his biggest hit, Just Another Day.

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