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Gloria Estefan: Still Passionate

Gloria Estefan, whose latest album is titled Gloria! tells CBS This Morning Co-Anchor Mark McEwen that music has always given her joy, and her heritage has given her passion.

Estefan, 41, partly attributes her high energy level to her ethnic heritage. "Well, it may come with being Latin. That's a bit of it. We're passionate about everything. That's why we try not to discuss religion and politics with anyone we love."

But she also credits music with lifting her heart and energizing her body. "For me, that's what music did my whole life - it made me feel great," she says. "It's a lot of energy. Music makes me feel like that."

Among the milestones in her career, Estefan counts the first time she heard Dr. Beat on a local radio station in Miami.

"We believed in that song and didn't know they were going to play it," she recalls. "We were in a rehearsal, and somebody came in with a radio - 'Listen!' It was Dr. Beat. I go, 'Oh, my God! I can't believe this.' The deejay took a chance and played it."

The songs on her new album include Cuba Libre, which is very close to Estefan's heart. She says she would love to visit her native land someday, adding that she has never given a concert in Cuba.

"I'd love to be able to immerse myself in my culture. [Cuba Libre] talks about the fact that I have performed for so many different cultures, yet not my own."

She and her husband, Emilio Estefan, 45, have been together for 22 years, married for 20.

"We're very fortunate," says Estefan. "We love each other deeply. We fell in love with who we were, not the trappings or the celebrity part. We continue to love each other more so [because] we've had difficult experiences that have made us closer."

Those "difficult experiences" included a 1990 road accident in Pennsylvania that could have threatened Estefan's health and career. As she slept inside her tour bus, it was rear-ended by a speeding semi-truck. Estefan was thrown from her bed and broke her back.

She had surgery, during which doctors implanted two titanium rods on either side of her spine and closed the incision with 400 stitches. But, just two years later, for the benefit of the victims of Hurricane Andrew, she organized a concert that raised $3 million.

Gloria and Emilio Estefan have two children, Nayib, 18, and Emily Marie, 3.

"They're great," she says. "My son moved out! He's in college." And she calls Emily "the joy of our lives."

Do her son's friends ever hang around, hoping to get a peek at Mom? "My son did tell me some magazine cover came out, and his friends said, 'Man, your mom is hot!' He goes, 'Don't talk like that about my mom!'"

Up next for Estefan is her feature-film debut, co-starring with Mryl Streep in 50 Violins.

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