Mexican American singer Jenni Rivera knew how to get people talking with her bold, outspoken lyrics and stage presence -- but by early Sunday, the talk would take a grim turn as word spread that a small plane carrying the singer went missing in northern Mexico, with the singer believed to be dead.
Rivera had performed a concert in Monterrey on Saturday night.
Though the 43-year-old songwriter became a force in Latin music with her female-empowered songs, Rivera had also become a growing presence on television.
The queen of banda served as an executive producer of “Jenni Rivera Presents: Chiquis & Raq-C,” a reality show that centered on her mild-mannered eldest daughter, Janney “Chiquis” Marin, and her friend, Latina radio personality Raquel "Raq-C" Cordova. The series ran for one season on Telemundo’s sister network mun2— and the Rivera family would be to the network what the Kardashian clan is to E! network.
Spinoffs naturally ensued, with the Latin music star at the forefront. “I Love Jenni” showed a glimpse into Rivera’s chaotic lifestyle of being a mother to five children, with a new husband (whom she would later divorce) and a full-charge music career. It would become the highest-rated original reality series for the network. Earlier this year, the network launched “Chiquis ‘n Control,” with the singer’s daughter again in the spotlight as she prepared to launch her first business — a blow dry salon.
They, too, got in the wedding special game. “Jenni Rivera Presents: La Boda de mi Hija" (The Wedding of My Daughter), which aired in November, followed Rivera’s daughter Jacqui Marin on her journey to wedded bliss. It was the night's No.1 show among Latino viewers ages 18-49 and 18-34 in all of cable, regardless of language.
Rivera’s most recent TV project was slated to hit one of the English-language broadcast networks. ABC confirmed that Rivera had a family comedy in development that would star the Mexican American singer-songwriter, from producers Robert K. Boyett and Robert Horn (“Designing Women”).
On Sunday, as Telemundo and other Spanish channels interrupted programming to cover the missing plane, over on mun2, an episode of “Chiquis ‘n Control” was airing, with promotions for an evening broadcast of “Jenni Rivera Presents: La Boda de mi Hija” airing in between. Telemundo and mun2 later announced they would run a two-hour special about Rivera Sunday night.
Telemundo noted that Rivera's family was headed to the scene of the accident.