The Late, Great Jimmy Lopez

It would’ve been my grandfather Jaime’s birthday today.

Seen here on the far right, singing, my grandfather was a vocalist for a big-time Colombian jazz/dance band back in the day. He also used to run one of the hottest nightclubs in Bogotá. These were all things I learned after his passing. In my time with him, he was just this larger-than-life source of cheer and wisdom.

My life would’ve been radically different if it wasn’t for him. He put the love of music in me. He was with me during some of the most significant moments during my formative years. He was a great man– flawed, but with great resilience and character. He was one of the most kindhearted people ever, and taught me so much about music and life in general. We used to be inseparable. We made a great team.

He died when I was 10. I remember hearing the phone conversation my dad was having with my grandmother about it, when they still hadn’t told me about his passing. I remember rushing upstairs and trying to convince myself that they must’ve been talking about somebody else as I tried to force myself to sleep. I still miss him terribly.

Right now I’m listening to one of his favorite songs, “I’ve Got You Under My Skin”, and remembering.

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