Legendary Latino TV Host Credited With Launching Selena, Has Passed Away

Johnny Canales, the TV host who is credited for introducing Tejano music to the world, has passed away. He was 77.

The El Show de Johnny y Nora Canales shared the sad news with a Facebook post. Nora is Johnny’s wife and co-host. There was no mention of his cause of death.

“With heavy hearts, we announce the passing of Johnny Canales.”

“He was more than just a beloved husband, father, TV host, musician, and entertainer; he was a beacon of hope and joy for countless people. His infectious charisma and dedication to promoting Latino music and culture left a large mark on the world. Johnny’s spirit will continue to live on through the countless lives he touched and the legacy he built.”

“We thank you all for your kind words, love, and support during this difficult time. Please keep our family in your thoughts and prayers. Remember him not with sadness, but with the joy and passion he always brought into our lives”.

In May, Nora shared a video that revealed her husband’s health was taking a downturn. He had a stroke in 2008. Nora mentioned that she was “overwhelmed” by rumors going around that Johnny had died. She told fans he was in ok condition and had not been hospitalized.

Johnny was born in 1947 in General Treviño, Nuevo León, Mexico, Canales moved to the United States at a young age, where he would eventually make a significant impact on the Hispanic entertainment industry.

Canales began his career as a radio DJ in the late 1970s. His work on the radio quickly garnered attention, due to his dynamic and engaging style. Recognizing the potential to reach a broader audience, Canales transitioned to television, where he truly made his mark. In 1983, he launched “The Johnny Canales Show,” a music and variety program that became a staple for fans of Tejano music.

“The Johnny Canales Show” was groundbreaking in many ways. It provided a place for Tejano and regional Mexican artists to showcase their talent. The show was known for its lively atmosphere, featuring musical performances, interviews, and segments highlighting the rich cultural heritage of the Latino community.

Canales’ catch phrases, such as “¡Usted tiene el control!” (“You’ve got control!”), became iconic, endearing him to viewers and creating a lasting connection with his audience..

Canales’ variety show introduced rising Tejano artists to Texas and beyond. Perhaps, the most famous of these was Selena Y Los Dinos who appeared on the show several times. Canales was one of the first to give Selena a platform on national television. Other notable artists who appeared on the show include Emilio Navaira, La Mafia, and Intocable, among others.

Rest In Peace