A star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame was unveiled Wednesday honoring versatile singing star Ana Gabriel for a career that has included seven singles and three albums reaching the top of the Billboard Latin pop charts.

“Many years ago, my parents and I were walking along this boulevard and we were fascinated looking (at) the names on the stars,” Gabriel said during the midday ceremony. “I (felt) something in my chest, in my heart, and I said, `Mom, one day, I don’t know when, but one day my name will be here. One day I will have my own star.’ Today, that dream has now come true.”

Former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Latin entertainment news correspondent Jessica Maldonado and Henry Cardenas, CEO of the Cardenas Marketing Network, were among those joining Gabriel at the ceremony at 6623 Hollywood Blvd. in front of Ballet Hollywood.

“It is hard to put into words and express what the Hollywood star means to me,” Gabriel told City News Service prior to the ceremony. “There is a great sense of achievement, gratefulness, and accomplishment after many years of work, sacrifice, discipline and a promise made to my parents many years ago. It is a happy feeling deep in my heart.”

Singing in the mariachi, ranchero and pop genres and romantic ballads, Gabriel has released 28 studio albums, 19 compilation albums and three live albums, selling more than 40 million records worldwide.

Gabriel’s best-selling album is “Mi México,” a ranchera-influenced, mariachi-backed pop album released in 1991, which included a tribute to Mexico’s most popular singer-songwriter, Juan Gabriel, and opened the doors to her career in Europe.

Gabriel is a 13-time winner at the Lo Nuestro Awards, which honor the best of Latin music, receiving its Excellence Award in 2006. Gabriel has received four Latin Grammy nominations and a Grammy nomination in 1990 for best Latin pop performance for “Quién como tú.”

Gabriel said she considers the highlight of her career “not to get to the top but to stay atop for 46-plus years.”

“I am fortunate to be an artist that has been able to move and evolve with the times,” Gabriel told CNS. “It’s taken discipline, hard work and being committed 100% to a record label like Sony Music, who has supported my career for a long time.

“However, it would not have been the same without the commitment to my fans — around the world, far and near — who have inherited my music from generation to generation.”

Born Dec. 10, 1955, in the small town of Guamúchil in the Mexican state of Sinaloa, Gabriel’s family encouraged her singing and musical ability beginning when she was very young, staging re-enactments of a popular radio show where she would play the first three notes from a song and her family would guess what song it was.

Gabriel first performed on stage when she was 6 years old, singing “Regalo de Dios” by the ranchera singer-songwriter José Alfredo Jiménez. She recorded her first song on Dec. 15, 1974.

Her star is the 2,707th since the completion of the Walk of Fame in 1961 with the first 1,558 stars.

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