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Santana Biography

Santana is a Grammy-awarded Latin rock band, formed in 1966 by legendary guitarist Carlos Santana. The group became recognised due to their performance at 1969’s Woodstock festival. In 1999, Santana’s album Supernatural turned out to be their best-selling record to date and marked a change in style.  Furthermore, it spawned some of the band’s most popular hits, Smooth (feat Rob Thomas), Maria Maria and Corazón Espinado. Overall, they earned 9 Grammy Awards and sold over 90 million albums.

Early Years, Woodstock

In the early 60s, Santana, already a professional guitarist, moved to San Francisco and began creating the band, initially named the Santana Blues Band. In the summer of 1969, they made a huge impact at the Woodstock festival, where they performed songs from their upcoming album. The self-titled debut was a huge success and spawned timeless hits like Evil Ways and Soul Sacrifice. In 1970, Santana’s popularity grew with their second album, Abraxas and their version of Black Magic Woman. Moreover, the record made it into Rolling Stone magazine’s 500 greatest albums of all time.

Continuous Success

In 1972, a reformed Santana released Caravanserai to critical acclaim, reaching top 5. 1974 came with a greatest hits compilation, which peaked in the top 20.  While the next album, Borboletta, also peaked in the top 20, it was the 1876 album, Amigos, that made Santana return to top 10. In 1977, Santana’s double live album Moonflower went platinum in the US. Since then, the band became to experience a commerical decline, which escalated until 1999.

Under Arista’s label, Santana produced Supernatural, their most successful album ever. The album featured appearances from the likes of Wyclef Jean, Eric Clapton, Rob Thomas. The iconic Supernatural topped the charts in several countries and earned numerous awards.  In 2002, Shaman represented another commercial success, even though it was not even close to its predecessor. In 2005, Santana released another praised album, All That I Am, featuring collaborations with Steven Tyler, Joss Stone, Sean Paul and others.

Photo source: Pollstar