As smooth as it gets

Carlos Santana recently treated the City to some of his popular numbers
Last Updated : 28 October 2012, 13:41 IST
Last Updated : 28 October 2012, 13:41 IST

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There are guitarists and then there is Carlos Santana. The difference was on display  when the rock guitarist-vocalist’s signature Latin sounds blew away his fans at Bhartiya City on Friday evening. 

The grand Latin carnival was about to begin but not before ‘Indus Creed’ made its appearance and warmed up the show. Moments later, the legend himself emerged sporting white and the crowd was on its feet.

   Here was a man of 65, listed as the ‘100 Greatest Guitar Players of All Time’ performing live. And that does not happen everyday!

The crowd was ready for blues, rock, jazz, Latin — the cultural potpourri — so to speak. As the Congas and the Timbales rolled on, Santana opened with ‘Stop Over in Bangalore, Yaleo’.

The classics came one after another. Be it the familiar tones of ‘Black Magic Woman’, Oye Como Va or Samba Pa Ti, he articulated with his guitar riffs and sometimes, with words of peace. And he talked about Bob Marley’s ‘One World’, but of course!

The crowd cheered on, twirling, playing air-guitarand singing along with the man who proved yet again that he is never too old to rock. Well, he did not forget to keep the women in good humour either, especially in the run-up to ‘Maria Maria’.

“We love to make the females happy, if the females are happy everything is
beautiful,” he said.

So there it was — ‘Maria Maria’ from his Grammy-winning album ‘Supernatural’. The guitar serenade sent the crowd, diverse as it was, on a high.

There was quite an activity on stage. Clearly, a case of more the merrier, be it the conga drummer/percussionist Raul Rekow,  percussionist Karl Perazzo, drummer Milton Chambers, bassist Benjamin Rietveld, vocalist Anthony Lindsay or William Ortiz on the trumpet.

The icon let others share the limelight too. “We want to invite someone on the drums....who also happens to be my wife,” he said. Out came Cynthia Blackman, his wife  only to leave the audience ‘drumstruck’ with her brilliant solo drum act. That was a pretty good five minutes.

There was ‘Europa’, the popular ‘Smooth’, ‘Esperando’ and ‘Gypsy Queen’ as well, not to forget the psychedelic African salsa ‘Jingo’.

The evening echoed long drum solos, wailing notes of the guitar and the perfect percussion beats.

Make no mistake, the master was at his best. But the guitar was surely the hero!

Published 28 October 2012, 13:41 IST

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