Jorge Santana, the youngest brother of famous guitarist Carlos Santana and an accomplished musician in his own right, has died, his family said. He was 68 years old. Jorge Santana's representative, John Regna, told TMZ that Santana died of natural causes.
Carlos Santana announced Jorge's death on Facebook. "We take time to celebrate the magnificent spirit of our beloved brother Jorge," the post reads. "He transitioned unto the realm of light that cast no shadow. The eyes of my heart clearly see him right in between our glorious and magnificent mother Josefina and our father Jose... They are caressing his face and kissing his hands showering him with Light and Love. We love cherish and honor your soul MEMO."
Fans immediately took to the comments section of the post to mourn. "Heaven is opening up for your brother Jorge. This is all a great loss for you and the family and therefor I wish you all strength for the time to come," one Facebook user wrote. "Love to you and your family, Carlos! We all enjoyed his music very much. Such a joy to see you two together on stage. My deepest sympathies," another wrote.
Jorge Santana is best known for being a member of the band Malo in the 1970s and for the hits "Suavecito" and "Darling I Love You," the first of which was a Malo hit and the latter a solo hit. "Suavecito" became a Top 20 hit and grew popular as the Chicano national anthem at carne asada gatherings all over the country. It was such a hit that Malo eventually performed on American Bandstand in 1972. Santana also worked with his famous brother Carlos with his management company as a director of artist relations, and eventually toured with Carlos in the 1990s. They got together for the 1994 album Santana Brothers, which also included their cousin, Carlos Hernandez.
The youngest of the three Santana brothers, Jorge started playing guitar after Carlos did, and at age 14 began playing in San Francisco. In the 1960s he started a band, The Malibus, with some high school friends; later the band changed its name to Malo as a nod to the band's frontman's mother, who would scream "¡Todos ustedes son malo!" at them. The band shot to fame with "Suavecito" after they signed with Warner Bros.
Before breaking up, Malo produced three more albums together. Santana had also been playing in a band called The Fania All-Stars, which played at Yankee Stadium in 1973 in front of more than 63,000 attendees. Five years later, Santana released two solo albums titled Jorge Santana; in 1979, he released "It's All About Love."