Abraham Quintanilla has been a part of music since the 1950s, as an artist to producer, and he was honored for the first time ever with Lifetime Achievement at the second annual My Tejano Awards on May 19.
“I am totally freaking out,” Quintanilla said during his acceptance speech. “I’m shaking right now and the reason is because I got involved with music at the age of 15-years-old and I’ve been doing music all my life and this is the very first time that I have ever been awarded something.”
The singer, songwriter and record producer began his music career as the founding member of Los Dinos, a Mexican American band formed in 1957. The group recorded 12 albums and toured throughout the United States and Mexico.
Quintanilla is the father and former manager of late Grammy-winning singer Selena and the executive producer of her 1997 biopic Selena. He formed Selena Y Los Dinos in 1980 featuring his children, Selena as lead vocalist, Suzette Quintanilla as the drummer and A.B. Quintanilla III as the bassist, selling over 70 million records.
“He let us believe that we were able to do something and we did and I’m so grateful this man,” Suzette said about her father. “His guidance is without words. He truly is someone I adore. I feel that Selena’s legacy and our music is played 24 years after my sister has passed because of the fact that he had solemnly swore that when my sister passed away he would not let her legacy and her music die.”
Selena was murdered by her employee Yolanda Saldivar in March 1995.
Abraham Quintanilla is the founder of Q Productions in Corpus Christi, Texas, and continues to produce music, record music and develop new talent.
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WATCH: Abraham Quintanilla honored with Lifetime Achievement