A woman put her plans to become a singer on hold so she could do what her father told her to do. Decades later, her dedicated grandson has helped her become a Grammy-winning star.
Angela Alvarez always had a talent for music. But she never had the chance to show the world what she could do. Her father told her she couldn’t study music, so she ended up working in a field she wasn’t interested in.
Even though the doors were locked, she kept writing songs behind closed doors. She went from being a cleaning lady at a bank in Colorado to a winning musical sensation. Her story shows that age doesn’t matter when it comes to going after your dreams.
As a young woman, Angela got married, had children, and moved from Cuba to the United States. She worked as a housekeeper to make a living. It wasn’t her dream job, but she did it to help her family.
She was happy, and she kept writing songs and singing for her family and friends. She remembered how her father told her in a harsh voice that she should only sing for her family and not for everyone else. Even if she agreed with him, time would show that he was wrong.
Before Angela’s life took a surprising and amazing turn, she went through a lot of hard times. In 1977, she lost her husband, and in 1999, she lost her daughter. She learned to appreciate the little things in life and was thankful for all the good times she had with his loving family. She told:
“I liked music a lot. When I was a child, I had two aunts who both played the piano and taught me how to sing. I was always the entertainment at family reunions. They made me dresses, and I liked to show them off.
Carlos Jose Alvarez, Angela’s grandson, went on to become a composer who knew how beautiful his grandmother’s voice and songs were. She sang a lot at their house, and everyone knew how good she was.
As Carlos got better at music, he started to think about his grandmother and wish he could record her music. He wanted to save his songs so that future family members could hear them. When he told her about this, she was happy about the idea.
Later, when he heard his grandmother’s music, he was shocked. He didn’t know that her songs were like a diary of his past events. He talked about:
“Her singing tells the story of her life.
Angela had about 50 songs, and when her grandson took her to a studio in Los Angeles to record them, they started making magic. After that, Angela got a part in the 2022 version of “Father of the Bride,” which was just the beginning of her huge success.
Carlos made a documentary about his grandmother’s life called “Miss Angela.” It was made with the help of Cuban-American actor Andy Garcia, who also worked with Angela in “Father of the Bride.” Carlos said the following about the project:
“Finally, Nana’s story is ready to be told to the whole world. My hope is that this project will make people want to sit down with their grandparents and ask them about their lives and dreams. They know so much and can teach us so much… And if we don’t ask them, everything will go with them.
The talented singer hopes that her drive to reach her goals will motivate others to keep trying. Angela, who is 95 years old, is up for a Best New Artist Latin Grammy for her first album. It was right and sent a strong message to the rest of the world.
In November 2022, the winner of the coveted award was revealed, and Angela became the first person to win the Latin Grammy. She won, making her the oldest singer to be nominated and win in that category.
As she accepted the prize, which she shared with Silvana Estrada, the woman was shocked and moved. In her speech from the stage, she said:
“My grandson was a big part of how I got to where I am now. I want to give this award to God and to Cuba, which will always be home to me.
His grandson added that being recognized at his age was “golden” and made them feel like they had won on every level. He hopes that other grandchildren will spend time with their grandparents and find out what their long-lost dreams were.