Gloria Estefan's Mother Is the Hottest Rapper in Miami Right Now

Last June, South Florida hip-hop made national waves when our very own Kodak Black and Denzel Curry nabbed spots on the coveted XXL 2016 "Freshman Class," an annual roundup of the most hyped up-and-coming MCs in the world. 

And if you grabbed a copy of that issue, we'll need you to follow these steps: First, go find it. Next, bring it into your bathroom. We'll give you a second. Ready? OK, now heave it like a javelin into your toilet and flush a thousand times because XXL somehow overlooked the hottest rapper not only in Miami, but possibly the entire game. Period.

Her name is Rapuela. She has an AARP card. And she's out here in these streets spittin' straight bars at all you jabronis.

Tea time with #Rapuela El Te de #Rapuela #likeaproperdiva

A video posted by Emily Estefan (@emily_estefan) on

If the 87-year-old Rapuela — legal name Gloria García Fajardo — looks familiar, that's because she birthed one of the most famous and beloved singers to ever emerge from Miami: Gloria Estefan.

Rapuela first came across our radar last week in preparation for a story about Emily Estefan (coming your way next week), the granddaughter/manager of Rapuela and a budding young artist in her own right. 

It was on Emily's Instagram account that the world first met all 4-foot 6-inches of lyrical fury that is Rapuela. And it's honestly shocking she hasn't collaborated with Drake yet. Her style is somewhere in between Pitbull and Rick Ross, equal parts smooth and ferocious. 

The Return of #Rapuela El regreso de #Rapuela

A video posted by Emily Estefan (@emily_estefan) on

As she lays down tracks on topics ranging from St. Patrick's Day to her tea preferences, her granddaughter Emily beatboxes in the background. 

Resale Concert Tickets

Powered By
powered by Seats For Everyone SEE MORE

  • Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 / 8:00pm @ Palm Beach Improv 550 S Rosemary Ave. Suite 250 West Palm Beach FL 33401
    550 S Rosemary Ave. Suite 250, West Palm Beach FL 33401

  • Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019 / 7:00pm @ Revolution Live 200 West Broward Blvd Fort Lauderdale FL 33312
    200 West Broward Blvd, Fort Lauderdale FL 33312

  • Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2019 / 7:00pm @ King Center For The Performing Arts 3865 N Wickham Road Melbourne FL 32935
    3865 N Wickham Road, Melbourne FL 32935

But even before Rapuela was burning down Star Island with that hot fire, she was a certified badass. After the Cuban Revolution, García Fajardo fled with her family to Miami where she worked as a public school teacher, supporting her kids while her husband, a soldier in the unsuccessful 1961 Bay of Pigs invasion, was imprisoned in Cuba.

In an Op-Ed for The Guardian posted in 2013, Gloria described her mother as a powerful and determined force in her life.

My mum is 84 now and still healthy and in great mind. She has a PhD in education, so it was very important to her that we go to good schools. When she came out of Cuba they ripped up all her diplomas and papers at the airport. They said, you're not even taking your education with you. She had to go back to school to get accredited because she wanted to make more money to send us to private schools, which she did.

These days, you can keep up with Rapuela on Emily's Instagram or by searching the hashtag #Rapuela. No word yet on when her mixtape might drop, so keep your ear to the streets.

Freshman class be damned. Rapuela is putting seniors on the map. 

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


All-access pass to the top stories, events and offers around town.

  • Top Stories


All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >