Beloved actor, comedian and country gospel lover, Leslie Jordan, dead at 67

Emmy-winning actor and comedian Leslie Jordan died Monday, Oct. 24 at the age of 67.

According to Los Angeles Times, Jordan was driving a BMW in Hollywood, Calif., on Monday morning when it crashed into the side of a building at Cahuenga Boulevard and Romaine Street. He was pronounced dead at the scene. At this time, it is unknown if Jordan was killed in the accident or if he suffered a medical emergency beforehand. Law enforcement reported that the condition of the vehicle suggested that Jordan may have lost control of the vehicle prior to the crash.

Jordan’s agent shared in a statement, “The world is definitely a much darker place today without the love and light of Leslie Jordan. Not only was he a mega talent and a joy to work with, but he provided an emotional sanctuary to the nation at one of its most difficult times. What he lacked in size he made up for in generosity and greatness as a son, brother, entertainer, comedian, partner and being Knowing that he left the world at the height of his professional and personal life is the only consolation one can have today.

Best known for his roles in TV shows like will and grace and american horror storyand in movies like Ugly, Jordan’s 30-year career has been characterized by screen-stealing performances punctuated by a lively, witty Southern accent, all wrapped up in a larger-than-life 4-foot-11 stature. He currently starred in the FOX sitcom call me kat with Mayim Bialick.

The openly gay native of Memphis, Tennessee, had an affinity for traditional hymns from his Southern Baptist upbringing and released his first album, a collection of Southern gospel tunes. Title The company is coming, Jordan certainly made his musical debut in good company. He enlisted the help of greats like Dolly Parton, Eddie Vedder, Tanya Tucker, Brandi Carlile, Chris and Morgane Stapleton, and many more.

“My friend Travis Howard and I decided to do this gospel album, because his story…he’s not gay. He’s straight and married with a new little baby, but he’s had the same…it’s was just a shame,” he said. Southern Accents Radio on Apple Music country about his gospel album. “He said they just shamed him so much because he would have bad thoughts and this and that. So when we started talking about it, the thing we loved about growing up in the church was the music. It was the fabric of our childhood. I knew, and when we decided that maybe we were going to do a gospel album, when we started listing all the songs and the people we wanted to sing the songs with, it was pretty amazing the memories that it has brought back, because I don’t have any ax to grind now. I am 66 years old. I solved all the problems. I am perfectly happy with who I am, what I am. And if you have a problem with that, that’s your problem. It’s not my problem. Yeah, that was the wonderful part of making this gospel album.

Additionally, Jordan opened up about meeting the one and only Dolly Parton. “Dolly has a guy named Steve Summers who’s been with her for 30 or 40 years. He designs all her dresses and goes with her everywhere. And I harassed him for years. I said, ‘Please , let me meet Dolly. Please.’ He said, ‘Well, when the time is right, it will be.’ Well, I was recording with Tanya in Nashville and he called and said, “Now look, I know it’s raining, but Dolly’s here in a studio. Well, I just left Tanya sitting. I I did. ‘Bye Tanya. I’m going to see Dolly. But anyway, I ran there and it was COVID, so we had our masks on, we couldn’t hug, we couldn’t approach, but we sat down and we slid over each other and we weren’t quiet for about an hour. And people say to me, ‘Well, how is she?’ Well, you know exactly how she is. You know exactly. Dolly is Dolly. And now I get up in the morning and I’m like, if I have a problem, ‘Well, what would Dolly do?’

It’s an ongoing story.

Listen to “Farther Along” from the album, Comin from the company,’ with Chris and Morgane Stapleton, below.

Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for ACM

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