Ednita Nazario performing in her most recent concert, Desnuda.
|Also known as||La Diva Ponceña|
|Born||April 11, 1955|
|Origin||Ponce, Puerto Rico|
|Labels||Sony BMG (2006–present)
Sony Discos (2001–2005)
EMI Latin (1991–1999)
Capitol Records (1991)
Melody International (1986)
Padosa Records (1982–1983)
Pronto Records (1979)
Borinquen Records (1976–1978)
Mardi Grass (1973)
|Associated acts||The Kids From Ponce (1969)|
Ednita Nazario (born April 11, 1955 in Ponce, Puerto Rico) is a Puerto Rican singer and songwriter who has achieved stardom both at home and abroad. She has been in the music business from a young age, and has released over twenty albums throughout her career.
Childhood sensation 
Nazario was born April 11, 1955, in Ponce, Puerto Rico, to Domingo Nazario and Gudelia Figueroa. She has two older brothers (Tito and Alberto) and a younger brother (Frank, a.k.a. Pancho). Ednita showed inclinations to music even when small. A family anecdote tells that when she was two, she went shopping with her mother but wandered away in the market. She was found singing on top of boxes to an enthusiastic crowd of shoppers laughing and clapping until her mother took her.
When she was 6 she attended a baseball game in Ponce with her brothers. While she was playing with her brother's glove, the batter hit the ball toward her. She held the glove up for protection, and the ball landed squarely in it. The crowd went wild, including Alfred D. Herger, one of Puerto Rico's top record producers, who was seated near the family. When he asked her if she wanted to be a baseball player, she replied "No, I'm going to be a singer." He asked her to sing something for him, and she responded with an impressive rendition of a local salsa hit that left both the producer and the crowd astonished. The crowd applauded her. Two months later, Herger visited the Nazario household with a recording contract, which the family, reluctantly at first, signed.
Teen success 
After some presentations, Nazario started alongside singer and photographer José Manuel, and Frankie Sabath, in a band which Tony Morales created, called The Kids From Ponce. The group played at several hotels and television networks, and achieved local success, appearing on various TV shows. However, the group disbanded and they became soloists. Nazario, then 17, was offered her own prime-time TV variety show: El Show de Ednita, broadcast by Telemundo Puerto Rico, and produced by Paquito Cordero. During this time she also won the "Miss Puerto Rico Teenage pageant".
In 1973, then 18, she released her first album called Al Fin...Ednita. The album spawned a #1 Hit: Te Quiero y No Me Importa (I Love You And I Don't Care), and also brought her award as "New Artist of the Year". With her TV show, Nazario became Puerto Rico's hottest idol. The show was also syndicated to other Latin-American countries. Among the international stars that she hosted were: Liza Minnelli, Tommy Dorsey, Charles Aznavour, Morey Amsterdam and Oscar-winning Puerto Rican actor José Ferrer. Ferrer was so charmed by Nazario's presence that he designed a nightclub act for both of them.
Ferrer was surprised at the reception of Nazario's show. They were booked at several hotels in the Caribbean, Lake Tahoe, Las Vegas and New York. They appeared at the Hyatt Hotel in Canada, and she was invited by Monaco's Royal Family to perform at the famous casino of Monte Carlo three times.
Rising star 
In the late 1970s Nazario participated in the OTI Festival as a singer with the song "Cadenas de Fuego", and in 1980 as a songwriter with the song: Contigo, Mujer (With you, Woman), co-written by her husband at the time, Laureano Brizuela, an Argentine singer and songwriter. The latter song, performed by Rafael José, won top prize of the festival. She also gained notoriety for her performance in a duet with Brizuela, of the theme song of the successful Puerto Rican telenovela, Coralito:Mi Pequeño Amor (Coralito:My Little Love), which Brizuela had written.
During this time Nazario signed subsequent record deals, first with local label Borinquen, then Ariola, and finally Padosa. During this time, she matured her style to one that was more pop/rock oriented. She also cemented her place as a touring force in Latin-America.
In the 1990s 
In 1989 Nazario released Fuerza De Gravedad (Force of Gravity). Perhaps helped by her recent marriage and motherhood, the album showed more focused lyrics and a more mature singer. The album included a duet with Air Supply singer Russell Hitchcock. Her following album "Lo Que Son Las Cosas" (What A Way For Things To Be) in 1991 included a Spanish version of a song made famous by Italian singer Eros Ramazzotti. The album also contained other compositions from her Argentinian ex-husband Luis Angel.
After her breakup from her husband, Nazario refocused her career and released Metamorfosis in 1992, following it with presentations in some of the most prestigious halls of the island. In 1993 she sold out a concert at the Roberto Clemente Coliseum which was released as an album the following year. After another album, she starred an impressive run of 13 shows at the Luis A. Ferré Performing Arts Center of San Juan, following Yolandita Monge's record of 12 consecutive shows.
In 1996 she released Espíritu Libre (Free Spirit), which went triple platinum soon after being released. On the heels of it, she sold out the Hiram Bithorn Stadium on a show that was broadcast via Internet.
In 1998 she was cast for the lead role in Paul Simon's Broadway musical, The Capeman, sharing the stage with Rubén Blades and Marc Anthony. She won the Theatre World Award for her performance as "Esmeralda Agrón". She was nominated for a 1998 Drama Desk Award as Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical.
In 1999 Nazario resurged in music, with Corazón (Sweetheart). The album, produced and directed by Dräco Rosa, went platinum in just a week. The album also got her several awards and two Billboard nominations. In 2001, after signing a new record deal with Sony Music, she released Sin Límite (Limitless), which featured fellow singer and songwriter Tommy Torres as producer.
In 2002 she fulfilled one of her dreams by transforming the Luis A. Ferré Performing Arts Center into a recording studio and inviting 300 friends to share with her two nights of an acoustic concert. The concert was released in two separate albums: Acústico I & II (Unplugged Vol 1 & 2). The presentation included a duo with Beto Cuevas, lead singer of the Latin-American band La Ley.
Next year, with Tommy Torres again producing, Nazario released Por Tí (For You). The album featured collaborations with Ricky Martin and Luis Fonsi. The supporting concert broke all attendance records in Puerto Rico. She followed with Apasionada (Passionate), also produced by Torres. This included collaborations with composer Claudia Brandt, Sin Bandera's Noel Schajris, and Luis Fonsi.
In December 2007 Nazario released her album "Real" produced by renowned producer Armando Avila (La 5ª Estación) and Graeme Pleeth (Sonique). The album was recorded in London, Nashville, Mexico City and Miami, and debuted at #1 in Billboard's Top Latin Albums and Top Latin Pop Albums, selling over 18,000 copies the first week. On July 2, 2008, Nazario filmed a music video for "No" along Natalia Jiménez of La 5ª Estación. Nazario was one of several artists selected to perform in "KQ Live Concert" on September 27, 2008. Organized by KQ 105 FM, the event included several renowned artists from Puerto Rico and other Latin American countries.
Nazario began recording the upcoming production on July 30, 2009, in Miami, Nashville and Los Angeles. The process was chronicled on her personal blog where she posted daily pictures, audio clips and video greetings from the studio recordings. Her new album "Soy" (I Am) was released on October 27, 2009. Nazario has worked with Tommy Torres, Sebastian Krys and Claudia Brant. On September 2 Nazario posted a 30-second clip of the first single titled "Sin Querer" (Without wanting to), which received positive reviews. As a gift to her fans, she broadcast the cover photo shoot live via internet on September 3, 2009, as well as the video shoot for her first single on September 19, 2009.
"Sin Querer" (Without wanting to) was released on radio stations and via Nazario's MySpace page on September 24, 2009. It was released on October 6 on iTunes.
"Para el Peor Amante" (To the Worst Lover) is Ednita Nazario's newest single which will be released on January 30, 2012.
- Her album Por Ti was nominated for "Latin Grammy" award in the category "Best Album - Female Pop Vocal"; it was also nominated for "Tu Música" award in the category Best Album - Pop/Ballad
- ASCAP gives Nazario the "Latin Heritage Award" (2004)
- NARAS Recording Academy Honors (2005)
- Nominated in the 2008 "Billboard Latin Music Awards" in the category "Album of the Year -Female Latin Pop"; also nominated (2008) for "Latin Grammy" award in the category "Best Album - Female Latin Pop"
- Nominated in a new category, "Top Album of the Year - Latin Female" in the "Billboard Latin Music Awards" (2009)
On October 2, 2008, a street in Ponce was renamed in her honor.
|You may listen to Ednita Nazario's interpretation of Pedro Flores' "Perdon" in duo with Marc Anthony here|
See also