Joan Sebastian, or José Manuel Figueroa Figueroa, was a Mexican singer. He wrote more than 1,000 songs and recorded over 30 albums during his career. The singer also had a few parts as an actor, mainly in Mexican soap operas. He was diagnosed with boner cancer in 1999, which returned in 2007 and then again in 2012. Although he was able to fight it off the first three times, the cancer came a fourth time in 2014, ultimately leading to his death in July 13, 2015, at the age of 64 years old. A miniseries about the singer’s life was released in June 2016, Por Siempre Joan Sebastian, starring one of his sons playing as the singer.
Sebastian was Catholic, and as such, asked for a priest to visit him before his passing. The priest, Alarcón Mota, an old friend of the family, said the singer passed peacefully. Joan had even considered becoming a priest before he started his career as a singer.
Joan enjoyed good food, his favorite meal was eggs with chili and frijoles (a Mexican dish made with beans) and also really liked the typical Juliantla’s (his home Mexican town) bread, marquesote.
The singer has been in a number of political controversies, including rumors about connections to drug dealers in Mexico. In 2012, residents from towns in Mexico talked about Sebastian’s attempts to remove them from the region so he could use the space for a touristic project. In 2014, Federico Figueroa, Sebastian’s brother, was accused of being involved in the disappearance of 47 students attributed to a Mexican cartel. As to actual politics, the singer didn’t seem to be too involved.
As extensive as his musical career was his dating life, with a total of eight (known) kids from five different women.
The number 13 was important during his career, even naming one of his albums “13 Celebrando el 13”. Joan Sebastian’s name has 13 letters and at 13 years old he got his first guitar, a gift from his father.