With a clear, dramatic voice that could hurtle toward fury or tears, Rivera presented herself, as the title of a 2006 album puts it, as Parrandera, Rebelde y Atrevida: Party Girl, Rebel and Bold Girl. More than that: she was not to be crossed.
Nearly every song on La Misma Gran Senora is flung at a man who’s leaving or has left her. It’s the emotional territory that has paid off for Adele, Pink, Taylor Swift, Alanis Morissette and Gloria Gaynor: anger overpowering heartache. And Rivera pitched her vengeance to grown-ups.
The title track – which was released within weeks after Rivera announced the filing of her divorce from the baseball player Esteban Loaiza – taunts the singer’s ex by insisting, “I’ll go on being the great woman/You without me are worth nothing from now on.” It’s a follow-up to the title song of a 2009 album, La Gran Senora, a mariachi waltz that’s also included on this collection. La Gran Senora warned a younger rival that stealing her man would take more than “a pretty face” and “a body without stretch marks.”
Rivera goes from sobs to wrath in Resulta, advising the man to take his suitcase and go; in No Vas a Creer (You Won’t Believe), she gloats to a man that she’s already over him. And in Que Me Vas a Dar (What Will You Give Me), she drips sarcasm as she negotiates the terms of a potential reconciliation.
Men weren’t her only targets. The album ends with Ovarios (Ovaries), an accordion-driven corrido from 2009 with a hip-hop attitude; it boasts about her fame and directly taunts, by nickname, her rivals among female singers. But that was a side trip. Rivera earned her fame as a woman determined to fight for her passions.