This was her debut solo release without her band's name "Selena Y Los Dinos". It was released on EMI Latin on October 17, 1989. I don't consider her debut to be on the same level as "Amor Prohibido", but I find it to be pretty significant since she was the first artist to be signed on EMI Latin and the album had outsold her female contemporaries in the Tejano market. Her previous indie-label records never found any success until she had signed with EMI Latin. Beginning with "Selena", Selena and her band began experimenting with various genres that led to the introduction of cumbia music.
Selena had recorded three English-language demo songs for the heads of EMI's pop division in hopes of doing a crossover album. A request for doing a crossover album was sent by the company's president Jose Behar, but unfortunately, the request was denied by the heads of EMI Records' pop division, believing the singer should first strengthen and expand her fanbase. They didn't think at the time that a Mexican-American woman could have the potential of having any crossover success, which I find it to be absolutely idiotic, considering she had the vocal talent, the looks, sex appeal, favorable personality, and on stage charisma. She was the total package.
Initially, EMI Latin wanted a Grammy Award-winning producer to work with Selena on her album. Her brother and bass guitarist, A.B. Quintanilla became the singer's principal record producer and songwriter prior to signing with EMI Latin in 1989. EMI Latin felt that they were "gambling" when they opened a Latin division. Abraham went into an agreement that if A.B. failed to produce a successful album, then they would approve of a Grammy Award producer for her next recording. Under pressure, A.B. expressed how the band "couldn't take a failure" and worried that if they did, the band would be "at the bottom of the totem pole". The production of the album began on June 4, 1989, Selena expressed her excitement about the album; in an interview, she said: "I am really happy, all the hard work paid off." The goal of Selena was to be an introductory into the international Latin music market, with future sights into an English-language crossover.
The album debuted at #17 on the US Billboard Regional Mexican Albums chart in the week ending December 2, 1989. It was the highest debut for an album that week, beating out La Fiebre's On the Right, and was the first album by Selena to have charted on a national music chart. It promptly slipped off the charts in the following week, though it returned following the holiday season at #15. In the following week Selena rose to #12 in the week ending January 27, 1990. The album peaked at #7 in its seventh week on March 24, 1990. It was Selena's highest peaking album, until Ven Conmigo surpassed it a year later. During the twenty-year celebration of Selena releasing music, Selena was repackaged and was made available for physical and digital purchase on September 22, 2002. The limited edition version included Selena's top 20 single "La Bamba" (1987), as well as spoken liner notes containing commentary and recollections of each track provided by the singer's family, friends, and her band.
The album spawned three singles, "Contigo Quiero Estar", "Mentiras", and a Spanish-language version of a Japanese song called "Sukiyaki", which was also covered by A Taste Of Honey, one of Selena's fave artists.
My fave songs from the album are "Besitos", "Sukiyaki", and "My Love".