She formally debuted on the music scene in 1995 with the release of her album "Chacalosa".
That successful album was followed with two other independent albums, one a tribute to slain Mexican-American singer Selena that helped Rivera expand her following. By the end of the 90s, she won a major-label contract, and built a loyal following that knew her as the "Diva de la Banda."
At the end of the 1990s, Rivera was signed by Sony Music and released two more albums, "If You Want to See Me Crying," and "Queen of Queens."
In 2002, she received her first Latin Grammy nomination, for best album in the band music category.
Even more widespread success came when she joined Fonovisa and released her 2005 album titled "Partier, Rebellious and Daring," which positioned her as one of the most renowned grupero singers and songwriters.
She was also nominated for Latin Grammys in 2008 and 2011.
She was also an actress, appearing in the indie film "Filly Brown," which was shown at the Sundance Film Festival, as the incarcerated mother of character Filly Brown.
"Though she'll be remembered as an iconic singer, she was also a powerful actress whose full range of talents the world was just beginning to discover," the directors, producers, cast and crew of "Filly Brown" said in a statement.
Her most recent album, "Joyas Prestadas," or "Borrowed Jewels," won widespread praise and awards and helped cement her status as one of the brightest stars of Mexican-American music.
She was also filming the third season of "I Love Jenni," which followed her as she interacted with her family and toured through Mexico and the United States. She also played a key role in the reality shows: "Jenni Rivera Presents: Chiquis and Raq-C" and her daughter's "Chiquis 'n Control."
In 2009, she was detained at the Mexico City airport when she declared $20,000 in cash but was really carrying $52,167. She was taken into custody. She said it was an innocent mistake and authorities gave her the benefit of the doubt and released her.
In 2011, her brother Juan assaulted a drunken fan at a popular fair in Guanajuato. In the face of heavy criticism among her fans and on social networks, Rivera publicly apologized for the incident during a concert in Mexico City, telling her fans: "Thank you for accepting me as I am, with my virtues and defects."