Yolandita Monge (born September 16, 1955) is an international singer and actress from Puerto Rico, first Puerto Rican female singer to be nominated to the Grammy Music Awards. She has been in the music business since adolescence, and has recorded over thirty albums through her career. She is widely recognized as Puerto Rico's Diva.
It was El Estornudo (The Sneeze), and her cover of Italian hit, Vida (Life), that made her a national star after she released her first album. At that young age, Yolandita would perform with legendary Argentinian singer Libertad Lamarque and then sing at the Festival De La Canción Nueva York (New York Song Festival). Soon, she found another job on TV, this time on Tommy Muniz's show, El Show Del Mediodía.
She followed up with some other hits in Puerto Rico, but then she moved to Mexico, where she signed with TECA records and had hits such as Vete de Aqui (Get Out Of Here), Dos Caminos Diferentes (Two Different Ways), Por qué Papá? (Why, Dad?) and La Voz Del Silencio (The Voice of Silence).
Soon after, she would be signed by Coco Records of New York, and her career kept going on a steady rise internationally. She sang at the Carnegie Hall and was backed up by her artistic godmother, Argentinian famous singer and actress, Libertad Lamarque.
Monge went into a stride in the middle 1980s, when she released what possibly is one of her greatest album ever: Luz de Luna (Moonlight). This album included her classics "Te Veo Pasar" (I See You Walk By), "Señor Del Pasado" (Man from the Past), and "El Poder del Amor", which was a cover of the popular song "The Power of Love" (most familiar in the Céline Dion version). With this album, she became the first Puerto Rican female singer to earn a gold record.
She came back with the production of Laberinto de Amor (Labyrinth of Love), which earned her another gold album and later went platinum. The album was nominated for a Grammy Award, years before the Latin Grammy was created. In this album, she sang the best Spanish version of "On My Own" (Solo Yo) which is a song from the soundtrack of the famous Broadway musical: "Les Miserables". Yolandita was a household name. This album earned her a Grammy nomination in the Best Latin Pop artist category. With this nomination she became the first Puerto Rican female singer to be nominated to the Grammy Music Awards, joined by fellow Puerto Rican singer Lunna, as well for the same nomination. The album also went gold in many countries including the United States.
In 1988, she returned to the platinum level with her album, Vivencias (Life's Experiences). Yolandita considers this album her best album ever and many fans and non-fans agree with her. This album included such songs as: Acariciame (Caress Me) and Este Amor Que Hay Que Callar (This Love That we Must Keep Quiet) composed for her by the Spanish singer and author Braulio. She became the first Puerto Rican singer to win a gold album record, a platinum record and a doble platinum.
Yolandita was claimed by the America's music magazine Billboard in 1988 as "The best-selling Latin artist of the year" due to being the first Puerto Rican female artist to sell millions of records. She also was claimed by the international music press as "The most important Latin singer of the decade" (1980-1990). NBC traveled all the way to Puerto Rico to interview Yolandita because they consider her the most relevant artist of the Latin music industry and she was even compared with Madonna. In the interview the reporter said: "Yolandita has no plans to make the crossover, so Madonna can relax."
In 1994, she became the first Puerto Rican female to land a commercial deal with Pepe Jeans London and also for Diet Pepsi. During that year, Monge released Fiebre de Luna, along with a change of image. The hit album included compositions from Las Diego and produced the singles "A Pesar del Tiempo" and "Como Puedes".
In 1995, she teamed with singer Ricardo Montaner to do a concert and they earned a Guinness World Records as becoming the first singers to perform 3 concerts in 3 different cities (Mayagüez, Ponce and San Juan) - all in the same day. This could be done, using air transportation by helicopter. It was called: El Suceso (The Event).
Monge was honored in 1996 by the Puerto Rican Senate for her long career as a singer and actress. She also earned two of the most prestigious awards of the Latin music industry, Premios Lo Nuestro and Premios Tu Música. Also in 1996, she participated in the annual music video special, produced by Banco Popular de Puerto Rico, dedicated to Bobby Capó, which usually includes only the most important and international singers the island has to offer.
During the late 1990s Monge took a long lay-off from her career to be with her family and to act in a Colombian telenovela and other projects.
In 1997, Yolandita released "Mi Encuentro", which included bomba and plena, a puertorrican rhythm. The album was a hit and cemented the singer's ability to tacke any kind of music. The singer returned with another change of image and to her signature strong ballads with the album "Siento" in 1999. The album was certified gold and included the hit "Mala Sangre", an ode to her detractors.
Yolandita took some time off and returned with "Sexto Sentido" in 2002, which included a collaboration with her eldest daughter and singer Noelia. This album was produced by Colombian producer Kike Santander and was certified gold.
During June 2003, Yolandita was part of a line of witnesses in a domestic violence trial with actor and model Osvaldo Rios as defendant. Her testimony was key for the prosecution as she had witnessed the aftermath of an encounter in the face of Osvaldo's girlfriend. Later that year the defendant was found guilty. She stand out in a great campaign against domestic violence.
In 2004 she conducted her TV Show for Telemundo called "De Mujeres" (Of Women). In this variety show she performed comedy skits and interviewed both local and international stars. She also sang duets with home grown singers like: Julieta Venegas, Luis Fonsi,Lucecita Benitez, Victor Manuelle, Chucho Avellanet, Gilberto Santa Rosa, La India, Gisselle, Lissette, Tito Nieves,Dagmar, Andy Montañez, Danny Rivera, and many more. These performances were once in a lifetime duets that graced Puerto Rico's silver screen and kept the captive audience that followed the show wanting more.
After five years of not releasing a new album, Monge released in June 5, 2007, her latest album "Demasiado Fuerte". It debuted number one in Billboard Latin Pop Albums making her return to music one of the greatest comebacks ever seen in the Latin Market. The album was produced by Jose Luis Pagan and Jorge Luis Piloto. Also, the album included the hits "Y Todavia" and the title track, "Demasiado Fuerte", both of which were remixed in Reggeaton style and became hits in the urban radio stations in Puerto Rico and the Latin communities in United States.
In November 2007, Yolandita returned to Centro de Bellas Artes with five sold-out concerts. The singer received the best reviews of her career with those performances, which included duets with guest Glenn Monroig. On October 6, 2008, Monge debuted a single titled "Mala" in the radio of Puerto Rico.
|Year||Album Title||Record Label||Notes|
|1969|| Puerto Rico's Poignant...|
|1970||A star is Shining||Patty|
|1974||Con Todo Mi Amor||Teca|
|1977||Soy Ante Todo Mujer||Coco|
|1978||En Su Intimidad||Coco|
|1979||Estilo y Personalidad||Discofono|
|1981||Historia de Amour||Sony||Gold|
|1985||Luz de Luna||Sony||Gold|
|1986||Mis Canciones Preferidas||Sony|
|1987||Laberinto de Amor||Sony||Gold, Platinum|
|1988||Vivencias||Sony|| Gold, Platinum, |
|1988|| Nunca Te Diré Adiós /|
|1991||Mis Canciones Preferidas 2||Sony|
|1992||Cara de Ángel||WEA-Latina|| Gold, Platinum, |
|1992||Mi Mejor Regalo||WEA-Latina|
|1994||Fiebre de Luna||WEA-Latina||Gold|
|2000||Yolandita En Vivo||BMG||Gold|
|2000||Yolandita (2000)||Z Records - Spain|
|2002||Sexto Sentido||Warner Music||Gold|
|2007||Demasiado Fuerte||Univision Music||Billboard Pop Album - #1|
|2008||Mala||Universal Music Latino||Release: November 25 2008|
La Princesa de la Naturaleza--Nature's Princess: SF Bay Area vocalist Maria Marquez creates a stunning Venezuelan jazz vocal album on her latest CD.(Entrevista)
Oct 01, 2003; SEEDS On her latest album--Princesa de la Naturaleza (Nature's Princessvocalist Maria Márquez showcases a brilliant musical...