Musical Notes – Joan Sebastian
Voiceover by Lawrence Standifer Stevens
Written by Joseph E. Casanova
Known as El Rey Del Jaripeo, or “The King of Mexican Rodeo,” Joan Sebastian leaves behind a musical legacy including duets with long-time friend Vicente Fernandez and soap opera star Lucero.
The celebrated singer/songwriter recently passed away at age 64 at his family’s ranch in Mexico after a long bout with bone cancer.
Sebastian was born José Manuel Figueroa Figueroa in 1951 in Guerrero, Mexico.
He penned the unforgettable Secreto de Amor (“Secret Love”), the brilliant Anoche Hablamos (“Last Night We Talked”) and El Ultimo Barco (“The Last Boat)”, a duet he did with Fernandez.
In 2012, he recorded Un LuJo with fellow ranchera singer Lucero. For the CD’s title, the artists combined the first two letters of their names. The CD included the hit Caminar Contigo (“Walk with You”) and the sordid Escandolo Social (“Social Scandal”).
Sebastian and Fernandez toured together in 1999, bringing the traditional Mexican rodeo called una charreada to the Freeman Coliseum.
Watching those vaqueros made me think of the greatest cowboy I ever knew… my late Grampa Teo.
Mom shared stories of how he would be gone for weeks, even months at a time, when he worked as a chuck wagon cook on the old Chisolm Trail.
He often prepared pan de campo, or “camp bread,” in a cast iron skillet over an open flame. I can still taste every morsel as he fixed it for me when I was little.
Grampa taught me how to ride a horse and use a lasso. Whenever I wanted candy, he’d drive me down to Patterson’s Grocery in his old pickup truck.
We lost him in 1991 at age 90, and to this day, I still recall watching him whittle with his old pocket knife on the back porch.
Both cowboys definitely rode off into the sunset. Miss you lots, Grampa.