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Steve Jordan

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When Esteban Jordan showed up at the gates of the 19th Annual Tejano Conjuto Festival in San Antonio, TX, and asked to play, it was such a typical move on his part that one might wonder why his appearance was mentioned in all the headline coverage of the event. It seems that even devoted fans had lost track of this legendary performer, nicknamed “El Parche” for the patch he wears over one eye. He had dropped out of the San Antonio music scene in 1991, and there was a great deal of wild speculation about what happened to him. It turns out he had been in Phoenix, AZ, during the ’90s, and he told interviewers at the San Antonio festival that he had been extremely active there, having turned out nine new records during his stay. He “just showed up at the gate,” festival organizers told reporters, and was quickly rushed to the stage where he jammed with fellow Tex-Mex star Flaco Jimenez, once again revealing the imaginative playing style that has often earned him a reputation as the Jimi Hendrix of the accordion.

But for Jordan to just appear after nearly a decade of mystery is really not that surprising, as he has always been considered something of a mystery man, one of those characters about whom there are legends simply involving how one might manage to get in touch with him. “You have to call a certain pool hall in such and such a border town…” would be one such myth, while another soothsayer might insist only the captain of a certain charter fishing boat on the Gulf Coast would know how to reach El Parche.

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  • oscarg_sol

    Steve "Esteban" Jordan, the iconoclastic conjunto pioneer, called "the Jimi Hendrix of the accordion" after he introduced psychedelic phase shifters to an instrument aligned with polka music, passed away Friday in San Antonio, Texas, from complications of liver cancer. He was 71. May him rest in peace.

    15 Aug 2010 Reply

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