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Over 40 years ago, Carlos Santana and the band that bears his name began a quest for what has been called "world music" by laying down tracks that would bring homegrown electric American music to the four corners of the earth. In turn, the music ricocheted back to our shores, filtered through the musical waterfalls of Latin, Afro-pop and Afro-beat, Caribbean voodoo-rock, and a dozen geopolitical musical zones that now regard Santana as one of their own. Carlos Santana, guitarist, composer, singer and band-leader was born Carlos Augusto Alves Santana on July 20, 1947, in Autlán de Navarro, Jalisco, Mexico. He is one of six children born to Jose Santana and Josefina Barragan. From the age of 5 young Santana learned the violin from his father, a professional mariachi violinist. He switched to guitar at the age of 8, when the family moved to Tijuana. During the late 50s he was playing gigs at clubs and bars with various bands up and down the Tijuana Strip. In early 1960s he and his family moved to San Francisco, California. In 1966 he made his debut with the newly formed Santana Blues Band (known just as Santana from 1967 on). In 1968 Santana was promoted by Bill Graham, a notorious music entrepreneur and producer, to play at the famous Fillmore West in San Francisco. The following year the band gave a legendary performance at Woodstock Music and Art Festival, just a few days before their first album -self-titled 'Santana'- was released in September 1969. They were the only act to play in the historic festival before their debut album had been released. The appearance, captured in the film 'Woodstock', vastly increased Santana's popularity. When Top 40 radio discovered the track "Evil Ways" from ,,Santana in early 1970, the album jumped to #4, on its way to double-platinum and the #150 spot on Rolling Stone magazine's 500 Greatest Albums list. The psychedelic second album titled 'Abraxas' (1970) eclipsed the success of the debut album when it reached No.1 on the album charts by the end of 1970 and went on to sell over four million copies worldwide. Three songs from that album: "Black Magic Woman", "Oye Como Va", and "Samba Pa Ti" became huge international hits. This Grammy Hall Of Fame Santana's second album has since sold more than 5 million copies in the U.S. alone. With two more tracks "Everybody's Everything" and "No One To Depend On" again reaching the Top 40, 1971's ,,Santana III ­their third album- spent 5 weeks at #1 and brought a third consecutive multi-platinum award to Carlos Santana and his band. In many ways, the band's career is bookended by the first three albums, ,,Santana (1969), ,,Abraxas (1970) and ,,Santana III (1971) on one end of the timeline and ­ three decades later ­ ,,Supernatural (1999), ,,Shaman (2002), ,,All That I Am (2005), and ,,Guitar Heaven (2010) at the other end of the timeline. The myriad adventures in between include countless collaborations with many famous artists and musical groups, including poet and guru Sri Chinmoy and jazz-rock guitarists John McLaughlin and Eric Clapton among others. He has released a total of 35 albums, and has appeared in dozens of music video clips, documentaries and movies. For decades he has traveled worldwide where his numerous concert tour engagements have taken him.

-2His album 'Supernatural' (1999) is considered by many to be Carlos Santana's greatest work. It became the Album of the Year, received eleven Grammy awards, and sold over 25 million copies worldwide. It included such hits as "Smooth" and "Maria Maria" and featured guest artists Rob Thomas, Wyclef Jean, Eric Clapton, and Dave Matthews among others. Santana continued collaboration with various artists in his next albums, 'Shaman (2003) and 'All That I Am' (2005), and also contributed to the 2005 album of Herbie Hancock. After years of touring, Santana evolved to become a multi-faceted artist and prepared to re-emerge as a conscientious social activist. He contributed to the benefit of San Francisco Earthquake Relief, Doctors Without Borders, Indigenous People Fund, Hispanic Media & Education Group, Amnesty International, LA Museum of Tolerance, and other charitable causes. In 1998, Carlos Santana and his wife Deborah started the Milagro Foundation which contributed 1,8 million dollars to help underprivileged youths. Santana also contributed the profits of his 2003 'Shaman' tour to fight AIDS. Other organizations championed by Santana include Save the Children, Childreach, Rainforest Action Network, Greenpeace and American Indian College Fund. During the 4 decades of his career Santana has been a true multi-cultural artist. He contributed to shaping the concept of "world music" by blending many styles and genres of music from a multitude of ethnic sources. His instantly identifiable blend of Latin, salsa, blues, rock, and Afro-Cuban styles has been evolving with the inclusion of elements from jazz, fusion, and world beat. Santana's high-pitched and clean guitar sound has been coming out of his custom-made PRS guitars. His unique and instantly recognizable sound is legendary: "With one note people know me..." says he. His trade mark: melodic blues-based guitar, PRS Santana II, moustache, often wears hat onstage. He became the first Hispanic to win a Grammy for "Record of the Year" in 2000 when he shared the honor with Matchbox Twenty lead singer, Rob Thomas, for the song "Smooth". Santana won the 2003 Pop Collaboration with Vocals Grammy for his collaboration with Michelle Branch for the song "The Game of Love". In 2004 he received the Latin Recording Academy's honor as "Person of the Year". He was voted the 90th Greatest Rock 'n' Roll Artist of all time by the Rolling Stone magazine. Santana was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998 as a member of the band Santana and was also awarded a personal Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for Recording at 7080 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California. A street and public square in his native town of Autlan de Navarro is bearing his name. Carlos Santana has sold more than 90 million records, and performed to over 100 million people globally. In 2009, he received a Lifetime Achievement Award. He is presently married to Cindy Blackman and has three children (Salvador, Stella and Angelica) from his previous marriage to Deborah Santana. Santana's quotes: "...the music that people call Latin or Hispanic is really African..." / "...Latin people are very passionate, and the music that we love is definitely Afro-rooted -- whether it's Bob Marley or Afro-Cuban -- because it deals with rhythms." / "... if you want to stand out, you have to learn to crystallize your existence and create your own fingerprints." / "...With one note people know me..." / "... learn to develop your own voice..."

IMDb By: Steve Shelokhonov Edited: JA. Bornot


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