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José Feliciano Facts

José Feliciano: The Life, Career, and Legacy of the Guitarist and Singer

Singer’s Biography

José Feliciano was born on September 10, 1945, in Lares, Puerto Rico. He was born with congenital glaucoma and was left permanently blind from his infancy. He honed his musical talent early on, starting to play the guitar at the age of nine. His family moved to New York City when he was five years old, and he grew up in the Spanish Harlem section of the city.

Age and Relationships

José Feliciano is currently 75 years old and has been married to Susan Omillian, his second wife, since 1982. The couple has three children together: Jonathan, Melissa, and Michael.


Although his height is not well-documented, José Feliciano is known for his compact and dynamic presence on stage, owning it with his guitar playing and vocal performance.


José Feliciano started performing in Greenwich Village clubs at the age of 17. In 1967, he recorded his first album, “The Voice and Guitar of Jose Feliciano,” which included his hit single “Light My Fire.” The song topped the charts in both the US and the UK.

He performed “The Star-Spangled Banner” before Game 5 of the 1968 World Series, which was controversial at the time due to his unique arrangement of the song. However, it proved to be a memorable performance and helped to solidify his place in the music industry.

José Feliciano has gone on to release over 70 albums and has won numerous awards, including six Grammy Awards. Throughout his career, he has collaborated with artists such as John Denver, Frank Sinatra, and The Doors.

Top Songs

Some of José Feliciano’s most well-known songs include “Feliz Navidad,” “Chico and the Man,” “California Dreamin’,” “Rain,” “Che Sara,” and “Que Sera.”

Net Worth

José Feliciano’s net worth is estimated to be around $6 million.


1. Did José Feliciano have any musical influences?

José Feliciano cites his musical influences as Andrés Segovia, Ray Charles, and Wes Montgomery. He has also mentioned being inspired by the rhythms and beats of Puerto Rican music.

2. What was José Feliciano’s breakout performance?

José Feliciano’s performance of “Light My Fire” on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour in 1968 helped to propel him into the public eye and solidify his place in the music industry.

3. Who are some of José Feliciano’s musical collaborators?

José Feliciano has collaborated with numerous artists throughout his career, including John Denver, Frank Sinatra, Dumpstaphunk, Joss Stone and The Doors.

4. What made José Feliciano’s rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner” controversial?

José Feliciano’s version of “The Star-Spangled Banner” before Game 5 of the 1968 World Series was controversial at the time due to his unique arrangement of the song, which included elements of Latin music and incorporated the guitar.

5. Has José Feliciano acted in any movies or TV shows?

In addition to his music career, José Feliciano has dabbled in acting, with appearances in TV shows such as Chico and the Man, Kojak, and MacGyver.

6. What are some of José Feliciano’s most noteworthy awards and honors?

José Feliciano has won six Grammy Awards throughout his career and has been inducted into the International Latin Music Hall of Fame, the Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame, and the Puerto Rican Hall of Fame.

7. What is José Feliciano’s song “Feliz Navidad” about?

“Feliz Navidad” is a holiday song written and performed by José Feliciano, which translates to “Merry Christmas” in English. The song combines elements of English and Spanish, making it a festive and upbeat addition to any Christmas playlist.

8. What is José Feliciano’s approach to writing music?

José Feliciano often writes music by starting with a melody or a chord progression. He has stated that he enjoys the creative process of songwriting and that he often draws inspiration from his own life experiences.

9. Has José Feliciano authored any books?

José Feliciano has authored two books, “No Dog Left Behind” and “Nobody’s Child,” both of which focus on his personal experiences and overcoming adversity.

10. In addition to guitar, can José Feliciano play any other instruments?

In addition to guitar, José Feliciano also plays the piano and the accordion.

11. What is José Feliciano’s philosophy on music?

José Feliciano believes that music has the power to bring people together and to transcend language, culture, and other barriers. He has said that he hopes his music can help to uplift and inspire his listeners.

12. What are some of José Feliciano’s charitable efforts?

José Feliciano has been involved in numerous charitable efforts throughout his career, including fundraising for organizations that support those with visual impairments and supporting various disaster relief efforts.

13. How has José Feliciano contributed to the Latin music community?

José Feliciano’s contributions to the Latin music community have been significant, as he helped to bridge the gap between Latin music and mainstream American audiences. His music has also been influential in the development of genres such as salsa and Latin rock.

14. What is José Feliciano’s advice for aspiring musicians?

José Feliciano advises aspiring musicians to focus on the music and to stay true to themselves. He emphasizes the importance of hard work and dedication and encourages musicians to never stop learning and growing.

15. How has José Feliciano’s music impacted popular culture?

José Feliciano’s music has had a significant impact on popular culture, with many of his songs and performances achieving iconic status. His music has appeared in numerous films, TV shows, and commercials, and he has been sampled and covered by other artists across genres.

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