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Jaci Velasquez

Jacquelyn Davette Velasquez, born in the late '70s, began singing at the age of ten and performed at the White House just three years later.
It's hardly surprising, then, that after several more years performing and recording with her family's worship ministry, she gained a record contract on her own. By late 1995, Jaci Velasquez signed with the Christian recording label Myrrh and found a number one hit (on the CCM charts) with her Spanish-tinged single "If This World." Her debut album, Heavenly Place, produced by Mark Heimermann, continued the Spanish inspiration and made Top Ten on the Christian charts for several months after its May 1996 release. A self-titled follow-up appeared in 1998, and a year later Velasquez resurfaced with Llegar a Ti. Released in 2000, Crystal Clear emphasized the Latin and pop elements in her style while retaining her CCM roots, and Mi Corazon appeared in spring 2001. But she was just getting started.
With 2003's Unspoken, Velasquez dropped an album that was steeped in pop texture, but still unabashedly Christian-themed. Her fifth foray into the English-language market, the album also employed songwriters outside of the CCM circle (including Senator Orrin Hatch, who co-wrote the title song), featured big-name producers (Emilio Estefan), and marked Velasquez's debut as a songwriter. With Unspoken, Velasquez made it clear that she wasn't just little Jaci anymore. Then in 2005, Velasquez moved even further afield of her teen pop roots with the alternative rock-influenced Beauty Has Grace. A greatest-hits album followed in 2006, and with 2008's Love Out Loud, Velasquez returned to her CCM roots. Diamond, released in 2012, found the singer once again tempering her CCM with alternative rock influences; that same year also brought the lullaby album Buenas Noches Mi Sol. Five years later, Velasquez released Trust, which was accompanied by a Spanish-language version of the same songs called Confio. ~ John Bush, Rovi


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