September 26, 2012 by jmunoz4
Jose Feliciano is a Puerto Rican composer, singer, and guitarist who has played an important role in the Hispanic and American music industry and is most known for his song “Feliz Navidad”. He was born blind, to humble beginnings, in Lares, Puerto Rico. Feliciano and his family immigrated to New York CIty when he was five. Growing up, he taught himself how to play various instruments such as the guitar. Since he grew up in the Rock’n’Roll era in the 50’s, he was inspired to sing. Jose Feliciano quit school at age 17 because he needed to help support his family. He then began to sing at coffee shops where he was discovered and signed by Jack Sommer. This was the so called birth of his stardom. He released many albums in both Spanish and English appealing to the whole world, especially Hispanic and American cultures. Feliciano has had many number one hits but his most famous song or contribution to the music industry is “Feliz Navidad”. This Christmas song has now become a tradition worldwide during EVERY holiday season. Feliciano has won nine Grammys as well as many other awards and recognitions. Today, Jose Feliciano is recognized as the first Latin artist to cross over into the English music industry. His contributions in the music industry and to American society were so grand that he was awarded a star in the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
As mentioned before, Feliciano’s greatest contribution to American Society and also to Hispanic society has been the iconic, bilingual christmas song. His song has “warmed the hearts of U.S. Hispanics and non-Hispanics alike during the season of giving season.” Everyone sings along and knows this song. The most important thing about the song is that it appeals to both Spanish and English speaking people because of its bilingual lyrics. The catchy lyrics of “Feliz Navidad, Feliz Navidad…Prospero Ano Y Felicidad” and “I Wanna Wish You A Merry Christmas, I Wanna Wish You A Merry Christmas…From the Bottom of My Heart” will never be forgotten. Also, Feliciano is an inspiration to American society because although he is blind, and struggled when he was growing up, he chased after his dreams and has achieved much more than he dreamt of. He has left a lasting iconic legacy on the world forever.
I have know about Jose Feliciano for a long, long time. Since I was a little girl, my family and I would also sing-along to his Christmas song. Thus, I found out about him because of his music. I then discovered his inspirational story and was intrigued. It is a tradition for my family and I to listent to “Feliz Navidad” every year during the holiday season. It is such a great song and I know that like many other families, we will continue listening to it until the day we die. It was not difficult to find information about him because he is a very famous and established artist. Everyone knows his song and most people know his story. Thus, there are many articles and biographies about him and his accomplishments. To conclude, Jose Feliciano’s legendary and iconic Christmas song will always be his greatest contribution to American society.