Carlos Santana performing in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Born on July 20, 1947, in Autlán de Navarro, Mexico, Carlos Santana moved to San Francisco in the early 1960s, where he formed the Santana Blues Band in 1966. The band, later simply known as Santana, signed a contract with Columbia Records, with Carlos becoming the consistent front man. Throughout the 1970s and early '80s, Santana released a string of successful albums such as Abraxas, Lotus and Amigos, making a big comeback in 1999 with the Grammy-winning Supernatural. In 2009, he received a Billboard Lifetime Achievement Award and several years later became a Kennedy Center Honors recipient. More recent albums have included Corazón and Santana IV.
Musician Carlos Santana was born on July 20, 1947, in Autlán de Navarro, Mexico. His father, Jose, was an accomplished professional violinist, and as a child Carlos learned to play the instrument from his father, though he ultimately didn't enjoy the tones he created. He would eventually take up the electric guitar, for which he developed an ardent passion.
In 1955, the family moved from Autlán de Navarro to Tijuana, the border city between Mexico and California. As a teenager, Santana began performing in Tijuana strip clubs, inspired by the American rock & roll and blues music of artists like B.B. King, Ray Charles and Little Richard. In the early 1960s, Santana moved again with his family, this time to San Francisco, where his father had already relocated to find work. Carlos became a naturalized American citizen in 1965.
In San Francisco, the young guitarist got the chance to see his idols, most notably King, perform live. He was also introduced to a variety of new musical influences, including jazz and international folk music, and witnessed the growing hippie movement centered in San Francisco in the 1960s. After several years spent working as a dishwasher in a diner and playing for spare change on the streets, Santana decided to become a full-time musician. In 1966, he formed the Santana Blues Band, with fellow street musicians David Brown and Gregg Rolie (bassist and keyboard player, respectively).
Carlos Santana - 2017
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