Considering the groundbreaking nature of Julio Iglesias' career, My Life: The Greatest Hits is more than simply a great collection of songs -- it is a vital, living piece of international musical history.
The single most popular Latin recording artist ever -- and one of the most successful recording artists in the world period -- Iglesias has never before seen fit to document his entire remarkable body of work in a single place. In finally agreeing to do so on this new hit-packed double-CD collection, Iglesias looks back less with a sense of personal pride than with a sense of deep appreciation for all the millions of the people all over the world who have made all things possible for him since the very beginning.
A fitting celebration of a groundbreaking career in music, My Life: The Greatest Hits is being released in a manner that is in many ways the ultimate culmination of Iglesias' international success. To celebrate the unique, worldwide nature of Iglesias' unprecedented universal popularity, My Life: The Greatest Hits is being made available to the public in a number of different, customized editions: an English or worldwide edition, an Asian edition, a Spanish edition, a French edition, an Italian edition and a Portuguese edition, with the first single from the set available in five languages.
"This collection really is for all those fans who have made the whole story come true for me," says Iglesias. "They are the ones who made these songs the greatest hits. Without their support, there are no hits, no concerts, no career, just a skinny guy with a little voice. All the awards and acclaim are very nice, but the ultimate award for me is to have the sort of fans who stay with you and your music year after year and allow you to keep growing as an artist and performer. Without those fans, there is nothing for me."
With his dedicated fans, of course, Iglesias has become a one man worldwide musical phenomenon -- a multinational force having earned more than 1,500 gold and platinum awards and selling well over 220 million albums in numerous languages to music lovers on every continent on earth. More than any other contemporary musical figure, the tirelessly touring Julio Iglesias has established himself as a true citizen of the world, and as this collection proves once again, a most highly-treasured one. Always forward-looking, Iglesias has long been a pioneer in expanding his following by touring in a truly global fashion -- hitting not just the major markets, but in developing countries as well. As a result of this hard work, at any given moment, somewhere in the world, a Julio Iglesias song is being played. And enjoyed.
Still, My Life: The Greatest Hits is no mere retrospective of past glories, a grand exercise in pure nostalgia. Yes, many of Iglesias' almost countless hits are present and accounted for here, including early classics like "Hey" and "Momentos," "Abrázame," "De Niña A Mujer," "Manuela" and "Un Canto A Galica," his earliest English breakthroughs such as "To All The Girls I've Loved Before" with Willie Nelson and "Moonlight Lady" as well as "La Cumparsita" and "A Media Luz," two highlights from Iglesias' internationally-acclaimed 1996 Tango project songs.
Iglesias can also be heard dueting with a constellation of other superstars including Frank Sinatra ("Summer Wind"), Diana Ross ("All Of You"), Stevie Wonder ("My Love") Dolly Parton ("When You Tell Me That You Love Me") and Sting ("Fragile"). Other past favorites featured on My Life: The Greatest Hits are "Soy Un Truhán, Soy Un Señor," "Où Est Passée Ma Bohème (Quiereme Mucho)" "Amor," "Que Nadie Sepa Mi Suffir," "Volver A Empezar (Begin The Beguine)," "Ni Te Tengo Ni Te Olvido," "Bamboleo," "Milonga Medley," "La Carretera," "Agua Dulce, Aqua Salá," "La Cumparsita," "Me Va, Me Va," "Can't Help Falling In Love," "Vincent (Starry Starry Night)," "When I Need You," "Crazy," "Caruso" and "A Mi Manera (My Way)" performed as a duet with Paul Anka.
In addition to all these familiar gems, My Life: The Greatest Hits also offers long-standing listeners some exciting hints of things still to come in the form of four brand new tracks including the first single "Moralita (La Gota Fría)," Iglesias memorable version of a classic Colombian smash by Carlos Vives, the romantically yearning "Crazy In Love" and a memorable take on the timeless standard "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes" which Iglesias and the popular vocal group All-4-One make their own in a version produced by Albert Hammond.
"I am still hungry as an artist, still moved by the music and excited about all of the new songs yet to be sung," Iglesias explains. "I think of My Life: The Greatest Hits as being like the first half of a book, but there is much, much more to come. However many records I have sold before, I still want to sell records -- and thanks to all the amazing fans who support me, I still am able to find an audience. Even now, if I am away from my fans for a few days, I find that cannot wait to get back on-stage and perform for them again."
Growing up, Iglesias had plans to perform in a different arena -- as a soccer player. An aspiring athlete, the young Spaniard was goalkeeper for the world famous Real Madrid team when a tragic car accident left him near death and paralyzed at nineteen. For three years he underwent the difficult process of recuperation. Fortunately, a physician's assistant in the hospital gave Iglesias a guitar to help lift his spirits. He started to write songs, and after recovering, he studied law before dedicating himself to music full-time.
During the Seventies, Iglesias established himself as an international superstar. Before he even arrived on the American music scene with 1984's multi-platinum 1100 Bel Air Place album, Iglesias has already earned a place in the Guinness Book of World Records for selling more albums in more different languages than any other artist in history. Since then, he's worked tirelessly as he's continued to both set records and test himself as an artist.
While listening back to his body of work in preparation for My Life: The Greatest Hits, Iglesias found himself surprised and moved by how much he enjoyed hearing some of the earlier material which he had not performed as much in recent years.
"What I feel most excited about doing this album was that way back in the beginning -- when I wrote more of the songs -- I was able to find the right simple words to get the people to feel so strongly," Iglesias says. "There were truths in those songs, simple but real truths, that the people connected with, and that makes me very proud. In a sense, those first records made everything else since then possible. In the Seventies, I was more of a songwriter. Then I became first an interpreter and a better singer who knew more about music. But as much as I loved singing a song like 'To All The Girls I've Loved Before,' those early songs are more naïve, more from my heart. Some of those early songs went straight to the people. Sometimes you try to do something more sophisticated and in the end not even you understand what you're talking about."
My Life: The Greatest Hits is proof positive that Julio Iglesias has always understood what he was talking about, and that he and his fans around the world have always communicated with great ease and beauty.