Stamps are the story of us, and what a powerful story they each tell. America's greatest people, places and moments are memorialized here, honored in the art and story of commemorative stamps.
Here, Heritage is our Hero™.
This stamp in the new Music Icons series honors Lydia Mendoza (1916-2007), one of the first and greatest stars of Tejano music. Mendoza was born into a musical family in Houston, Texas and raised in towns along the border. In her career that spanned seven decades, she recorded more than a thousand songs featuring her soaring voice and twelve-string guitar accompaniment.
First day of issue: May 15, 2013 San Antonio, TX
Lydia Mendoza is being issued as a Forever® stamp. Forever stamps are always equal in
value to the current First-Class Mail® one-ounce rate, which is $0.49.
In the early 1930s, the Mendozas moved to San Antonio and Lydia’s big break came when she won a singing contest on the radio. She became known as La Alondra de la Frontera, "the Lark of the Border," performing the Spanish-language music of the Texas-Mexico borderlands and beyond. Her music gave a voice to the poor and working-class people of the border, as well as Latinos throughout the Western Hemisphere.
In 1934, Lydia Mendoza recorded several solo cuts for Bluebird Records, including her biggest hit, "Mal Hombre" or "Evil Man." By the 1970s, she was recognized as an American folk icon. She sang at Jimmy Carter’s 1977 inaugural celebration, and received a National Heritage Award from the National Endowment for the Arts. In 1999, President Clinton awarded her the National Medal of the Arts, remarking, "Her legacy is as wide and deep as the Rio Grande Valley."
The square Lydia Mendoza stamp captures the look of a vintage 45 rpm record sleeve, down to a slight weathering of its colors. It features a black-and-white 1950s publicity photo of Mendoza with the flag of Texas, her home state, splashed across it. Neal Ashby and Patrick Donohue designed the stamp, working with art director Antonio Alcalá.
Legendary musicians, historic milestones, eminent sports figures – the 2014 stamp program celebrates our nation’s culture. And available exclusively through the 2014 yearbook – The Circus Souvenir Sheet, featuring a stamp with an alternative version of the iconic clown poster.
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