El Divo de Juarez

The world lost a legend on Sunday. The beloved top-selling icon from Mexico, Juan Gabriel, passed away at his Santa Monica home from a heart attack at the age of 66. Born on January 7, 1950 as Alberto Aguilera Valadez in Parácuaro, Michoacán he is known around the world as "El Divo de Juarez."

He is a music legend for writing, singing, and producing in many diverse styles as rancheras with mariachi, ballads, pop, rock, and disco. Not only did he have an incredible string of hits himself he also had a big part in the hits of others including Angélica María, opens a new window, Gualberto Castro, opens a new window, Aida Cuevas, opens a new window, Enriqueta Jiménez, Lucha Villa, opens a new window, Ana Gabriel, opens a new window, Lorenzo Antonio, opens a new window, José José, opens a new window, Luis Miguel and Rocío Dúrcal, opens a new window.

As a kid growing up I remember my mother being in love with Juan Gabriel. Not only did she love his voice and music but she also grew up in the same city he did, Juarez. There were many occasions where my mom had to stop everything to see Juan Gabriel on the very popular TV show Siempre en Domingo hosted by Raúl Velasco. I particularly remember a performance of his with Rocío Dúrcal at the Festival Acapulco, a TV special hosted by Raúl Velasco.


Although it is a sad moment for the world to see such an iconic artist, who touched the lives of so many with his voice and lyrics, leave us he will always be remembered. If you are feeling nostalgic or in the mood to listen to his greatest hits the library can help with that. You can listen to them all through the library's eMusic service Freegal, opens a new window. You can even see several videos of his many performances.

Not into digital music? We still got you covered. The library has many CDs and books on Juan Gabriel to check out.

Have your own memories of Juan Gabriel? Share them in the comments below.