At the age of 6, Esteban started his musical journey with the guitar. Having learned to play guitar in Chile, he was heavily influenced in the traditional forms of Latin American rhythms.
Once in Canada, he began to incorporate the influences of Rock & Blues into his music although always reverting back to the fundamental roots of what is Latin Music.
It would be in 1994 that Esteban releases his first album titled “Vientos de Sur”. Combining his Andean roots he forges melodies that incorporate pan flutes, bombo, kena and guitar.
At the age of 15, another style captured his imagination. Jazz was instrumental in teaching Figueroa the intricacies of music theory and was instrumental in forming his unique soloing technique. Through the guidance of Brian Lillos, who himself is of great renown playing with the likes of Dianna Krall, Ray Charles, Frank Sinatra, just to name a few, Figueroa was able to home in on improvisation. Winning three prestigious awards for best jazz guitarist in Canada through the National Stage Band Festival and numerous bursaries, Esteban began forming his musical style.
It would be in Victoria, British Columbia, that Figueroa would encounter flamenco guitar for the first time. Under the guidance of Harry Owen and Veronica Maguire of Alma de Espana Dance Company, he would develop his flamenco techniques. Touring with the group helped Figueroa develop the sense of rhythm that is so important in flamenco music.
Once in Thunder Bay, it wasn’t long before Esteban started playing at the local Inns. In 1997, the highly acclaimed group Flamenco Caravan was formed. Under Figueroa’s guidance the group opened up for such top acts such as Colin James, America, Paul Shaffer and Jeff Healy to standing ovations. His unique melodies captured the ears of many. Flamenco Caravan performed to sell out crowds at the Thunder Bay Fringe Festival.
It would be in 2000 when Esteban released his second recording titled “From Here to There”. Victoria free press described Esteban’s music as “lively, breathtaking music that is fresh air to the ears”. The CD was released to a sold out crowed.
Flamenco Caravan has reached national acclaim playing at the Ottawa Jazz Festival and many folk festivals around Ontario including the Owen Sound Folk Festival and the Cambridge Folk Festival. Esteban has been described as a lightning fast guitarist that does not sacrifice taste with speed.
With Flamenco Caravan, Esteban has released “Love’s Philosophy” and Alchemy in partnership with Susanna DiGiuseppe and Tony Agostino.
Now in November 30th of 2007, Esteban is ready to release his second solo album and his 5th recording. “CALMA” will take you through a musical experience turning feelings into music.
World renowned jazz bassist Alain Caron of the former group UZEB describes Figueroa’s playing as having a wonderfully unique touch to the guitar. He is featured in the album along with special guest musicians Dino Pepe on Sax, Dan Zacovich and Greg McIntosh on Bass, Tony Agostino on guitar, Alberto Figueroa on percussion and Jim Differ on drums.
“In my mind, Esteban is one of the great young guitarists in Canada”, Brian Lillos – Faculty – Humber College – School Of Creative And Performing Arts.
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