Mexican singer-songwriter Vicente Fernandez is known around the Spanish-speaking world as “Chente” aka The King of the ranchera music ("El rey de la cancion ranchera"). The Latin cultural icon, who began his career singing for tips on the streets, has recorded more than 50 albums so far. Dubbed as the Frank Sinatra of Mexico, the artist is also an established actor and producer and has acted in more than 40 movies. Vicente may not exactly be a household name in the English-speaking world, but the pure ranchera musician has preserved the heritage of an older way of living in Mexico by singing romantic accounts of philandering gentlemen, the revolution and life of the ranches in the countryside. For his contributions to the world of Latin music, Vicente Fernandez has been awarded several Latin Grammy awards and many marks of recognition for his services to the Latin community. Having sold more than 65 million albums throughout the world over a career spanning four decades, and famous for saying, "I'll keep singing," Chente has announced that he will retire from the industry after wrapping up his tours of the U.S., Spain and Latin America in 2012.
Through the sales of his ranchera albums, singles and through the ticketing proceeds from his live concerts, Vicente Fernandez has amassed a net worth of over $25 million as of May 2012.
Known for being a modern day personification of an older way living, Vicente Fernandez actually owns a ranch called “Los Tres Potrillos” outside Guadalajara, Mexico. Named after his 3 sons and for the artist’s love of raising horses, the ranch also houses Centro de Espectáculos Vicente Fernández Gomez, a lavish equestrian center. The center holds over 400 horses a quarter of which are miniature breeds which are his favorite. The facility holds charreadas, rodeos and music events throughout the year at its 11,000-seat stadium. The massive estate comes complete with its own church, a lake, two estate homes and massive stables. During Christmas time, Fernandez opens up his ranch to inhabitants of the surrounding countryside hosting thousands of children and handing them presents.
Fernandez grew up on his father ranch which instilled the love of the countryside in him. Vicente was a prolific musician even as a child. He won several music competitions during his formative years and began performing in clubs and concerts. The family’s financial difficulties forced him to pick up odd jobs when he was just 12 years old. Vicente kept working odd jobs while struggling to get his career in music started. In 1963, he left his life in Mexico City behind to marry a former neighbor Maria. The couple have 4 children together- 3 sons named Vicente, Jr., Alejandro and Gerardo and a daughter named Alexandra.