Born José Martín Cuevas Cobos on on September 28, 1969, in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico; married; wife's name Rebeca; children: Osmara, Karina, and Gema. Addresses: Record company--Universal Music Latino, 100 N. First St., 3rd Fl., Burbank, CA 91502, website: http://www.universal.com.mx.

While many child stars crash and burn by the time they reach adulthood, Mexican singer Pedro Fernández has made the jump from pre-teen prodigy to full-grown superstar with more than 25 LPs to his name, something largely attributed to his ability to reinvent himself and adapt to the changing tastes of audiences. In a career spanning two decades, Fernández has won over fans with dozens of chart hits throughout Mexico and Latin America. Despite his commercial success as a singer of romantic pop ballads, his return to the ranchera and traditional mariachi music of his childhood has accompanied a younger generation of Mexicans as they took a renewed interest in their country's traditional music.

Born José Martín Cuevas Cobos in Guadalajara, Jalisco, on September 28, 1969, Fernández spent his childhood in west-central Mexico, listening to a radio station that broadcast only rancheras. Ranchera music, a rural form featuring guitars and horns that is often likened to American country music, has gone from its rural roots and immense popularity in northern Mexico to become synonymous with Mexico as a nation. Mariachi music, in the same tradition, also uses guitars and horns and is performed by Mexican street bands. Fernández was a restless, almost hyperactive child who directed part of his energy, from as early as age three, to interpreting some of the ranchera and mariachi songs he heard on the radio.

Fernández adopted a stage name that reflected his love affair with ranchera music and two of its icons: Pedro Infante and Vicente Fernández. Moved by the young boy's rendition of the song Las carreras de caballos (Horse races), Vicente Fernández helped him get his first record contract, under the tutelage of producer Rúben Galindo. At the age of seven, Pedro Fernández rose to national fame with his work in the theme song for the film La Niña de La Mochila Azul (The Girl with the Blue Knapsack), in which he also played a starring role. His instant success won him additional recording and film contracts and consolidated his image as a child prodigy. Joined by another child star, María Rebeca, Fernández went on to costar in the films El Oreja Rajada, La Mugrosita, and La Niña de la Mochila Azul II.

As his repertoire shifted toward romantic ballads, his audience widened to include other parts of Latin America and the United States. Slipping away from his musical roots, Fernández began recording pop hits such as "El Perdedor," "Maniquí," and "Coqueta." He met his future wife, Rebeca, as she was being crowned state beauty queen from Reynosa, Tamaulipas. "The songs in each one of my projects are dedicated to my family, but not because a song says anything about us, but because I dedicate my work to the people I love, and in this case they are my wife and my three daughters, Osmara, Karina, and Gema," he told the LaMusica.com website.

Despite his sojourn in the musical territory of popular ballad singers like Luis Miguel, Fernández later returned to Mexican roots music, interpreting songs such as José Alfredo Jiménez's classic Amenecí en tus brazos. Fernández's label, Universal Music in Mexico, described the artist's journey: "A lover of Mexican music and of his roots, the artist broke with the idea people had of Mexican music, making it so that young people enjoyed it and took pride in our heritage, thus making him the most successful contemporary singer in our country, the United States and Latin America." Fernández lent Mexican traditional music a somewhat subdued voice in his pop ballads, and his work scored gold and platinum albums in the United States, Chile, and Venezuela. While Lo mucho que te quiero sold some 300,000 albums, this was later topped by Mi forma de sentir, which sold half a million copies. Over his 20-year career, the artist has sold more than four million albums and has appeared before fans in countless fairs, theaters and auditoriums.

When Pope John Paul II visited Mexico in 2001, Fernández, dressed in white, led other mariachis in serenading him upon his departure with the traditional song "Las golondrinas" (The sparrows). While the Pope did not come to the window to hear Fernández perform with his wife and daughters, the music was reportedly heard from inside the nunciature.

Also in 2001, at the Viña del Mar music festival in Chile, Fernández appeared onstage in his traditional blue charro suit along with ten Chilean dancers and 25 mariachis. That year he won popular acclaim with his interpretation of "Yo no fuí," a song by the late Pedro Infante. The song's success surpassed his own expectations, a "phenomenon" he attributed to the audience taking the song and giving it a new life. "The phenomenon caused by this new version of the song popularized nearly fifty years ago by the late Pedro Infante has been incredible," reported Reuters. "The song is heard constantly on all the local radio stations, it is at the top of the pop charts, and is even played in discotheques." The album Yo no fuí went on to win the award for Best Ranchero Album at the second annual Latin Grammy Awards in 2001. With his album De Corazón, Fernández was once again nominated for Best Ranchero Album at the 2003 Latin Grammy Awards ceremony, where the eventual winner was none other than his childhood idol, Vicente Fernández.

The massive migration from Jalisco and other Mexican states to the United States has guaranteed Fernández a large potential audience north of the border. In 2002 McDonald's contracted with the singer to appear in a commercial that targeted Latino customers. Despite his concert tours and popularity in the United States, he has flatly ruled out singing in English. "That will never happen because my public and my roots are Latin. Recording one or two songs in English isn't the same as recording a whole album, and that's why I don't ever plan to abandon my Latin roots," he told Reuters. However, he has reportedly entertained the idea of mixing mariachi music with other genres.

Fernández has continued to record and tour. In 2004 he prepared to join fellow former child pop star Lucerito in presiding over the 15th annual Fiesta Broadway, a Latin music event drawing nearly half a million spectators to a Cinco de Mayo celebration in downtown Los Angeles.

by Brett Allan King

Pedro Fernández's Career

Began singing and acting career at age seven, rising to national fame for acting and musical participation in the film La Niña de la Mochila Azul; recorded more than 25 LPs and performed regularly at fairs, festivals, theaters and other concert venues throughout Mexico, the United States and Latin America.

Pedro Fernández's Awards

Latin Grammy Award, Best Ranchero Album for Yo no fuí, 2001.

Famous Works

Further Reading

Sources

PeriodicalsOnline

Visitor Comments Add a comment…

over 3 years ago

Im in LOVe with this man he can make your heart stop I can listion to him all day. But how sad in his biography he didnt meansion his mother and father. But I still think his good looking and a great perfomer

over 3 years ago

Tu admiradora # 1 y tu el amor d mi vida. I love you !!!

over 3 years ago

he is my uncle!!

almost 4 years ago

me same as virgina down there i started watching tha noverla and oh my jesus i loved him he sings amazing and i heard hes a really great person i got a friend whose aunt is friens with Juan Gabriel and she met pedro fernández omg so jealous :)

almost 4 years ago

he won the 2010 latin grammy

about 4 years ago

hola yo e sido una admiradora tuya desde que tu eras nino casi tengo tu edad pero siempre cresi con tus peliculas y tus canciones siempre te eadmirado mucho la forma como as actuado desde nino sigue asi de sensillo y nunca cambies y siempre que agas algo te deseo lo mejor por que se be que eres una persona buena y nunca cambies ese carisma que tienes.

over 4 years ago

que me gusta como trabajas siempre me has gustado lastima que te llevo 3 años de edad bueno espero y vengas pronto para aca a bakersfield ca

over 4 years ago

Te Aventastes Raffi, (PF) in the beginning of the TeleNovela we were not too interested, but now we wouldn't miss it for the world. You have touched our hearts with your acting and music that we wish you the very best in your carreer and much success! Thank you for who you really are; we would like to see more family photos' of your children and wife. hope you will come to Austin,Texas and give us a great show. Much Love; From the Huerta Family, Austin, Texas.

over 4 years ago

I WOULD REALLY LIKE TO KNOW IF PEDRO FERNANDEZ IS THE CHILD THAT SANG IN CORPUS CHRISTI TX. WHEN HE WAS ABOUT 6-8 YEARS OLD AS A CHILD. THE SONG WAS(MAMMITA) IT REALLY WOULD MEAM ALOT TO ME TO KNOW. mY DAD TOOK MY DAUGHTER TO SEE THIS SINGER. i WOULD LIKE TO GET IT FOR HER AS A GIFT AND A WONDERFUL MEMORY FOR HER NOW 42 SHE WAS 2 YEARS OLD AND HAS NEVER FORGATTEN THAT SONG SO IS HIM IF YES TELL ME AND WHERE CAN I BUY THIS SONG FROM HIM THANK YOU LISA'S MOM MAGGIE CASTILLO

over 4 years ago

I have been a fan for a long long time I have been looking for one looking for one of his other movies, but I have not found it The name of the movie is "Un Corazon Para Dos" So if somebody could help me find it I would love it very much.

over 4 years ago

I just became a big fan of Pedro Fernandez because of the telenovela that he's in right now "Hasta Que El Dinero Nos Separa." I love him in that novela!!! Now, I'm a big fan of his music and am ordering his albums for my entertainment and his beautiful voice.

almost 5 years ago

I would like to add that I think Pedro Fernandez is a great person! I have admired him since he came out in the "La Niña de la Mochila Azul" and "La Niña de los Hoyitos'! His movies made me cry so much, and now I have purchased his cds from when he first began and I just crying! As a mexican I am very proud of what he has done and is acheiving in his career! I would love to meet him! I always see my brother a bit like him!I love him and wish you the best in your career and personal life!

over 5 years ago

In September 2008 I took my 3 year old to see Pedro in Albequerque, NM at the Route 66 Casino. This was the first of introducing my son to Mexican Music. For Halloween I had to dress him as a Mariachi, He won first place at the costume contest. I would love to take him to another concert. We live in Kansas. I would love to send Pedro a picture of my son all dressed up. I need an address in which to send it. We buy all the CD's and DVD's now. And now my 4 yr old dances like Pedro.

over 5 years ago

Myrna, I just saw Pedro in Fresno for "Viva el Mariachi" he was awesome! I can only understand a little spanish but am definitely a new fan. Hope you got to see him.

almost 6 years ago

Querido Pedro: te admiro mucho y tengo un nietecito que es muy hombre en su figura como tu. Me podrias decir que haces para mantenerte asi baronil y con esa figura, pues quisiera que mi david creciera como tu. Te quiero mucho y felicidades. Que Dios te bendiga mucho a ti y a tu familia. Te quiere Margarita

about 6 years ago

I have admired Pedrito Fernandez since I could remeber! He is my idol, and I really can't find the words to explain how big my admiration for him is. I see him and it is like a dream. Can't explain it. I have followed everything he has done for ever, and will contiue to do it.

over 6 years ago

to me pedro fernandez sings like no other his voice is so difrent from anyone elses ,he is one of the best singers of his generation.god bless him

almost 7 years ago

I would like to know if Pedro Fernandez plans to tour the US and if so, would he come to San Diego, California? I would be first to buy tickets to see him in concert. Thank you.