Carlos Santana is considered to be one of the best guitarists in the world. For more than five decades, since first taking the stage at Woodstock, Santana has been thrilling multigenerational audiences all over the world with the unique sound of his guitar.
Santana is truly a multicultural artist who has experimented with mixing many styles and genres of music from Latin and salsa to Afro-Cuban, blues, and rock. He has been a very influential force in shaping the idea of “world music.”
Throughout his multi-decade career, Santana has collaborated with hundreds of performers across the musical spectrum, from rock legends and R&B artists to some of the biggest names in pop, soul, hip-hop and Latin rock. His album, Supernatural (1999), was the first of several albums that consisted mainly of collaborations with other artists – including many that hadn’t been born when he played Woodstock!
Santana’s collaboration with guitar great Neal Schon is legendary in the world of rock music. Schon and Santana have released several albums together over the past several decades and have performed all over the world to enthusiastic audiences. The two have created what many consider to be some of the most quintessential guitar solos in rock history.
The decades-long collaboration between the two guitar greats began in 1971 when Schon joined the band Santana at the age of 15, and the two continued to work together on several albums, including Caravanserai. Schon joined Carlos Santana’s touring band in 1973, and over the years Santana and Schon have toured extensively together. In 2018, the two released the album Power of Peace.
Beginning with the release of his multi-platinum album Supernatural in 1999, Santana has taken to collaborating with singers, musicians, writers, and producers across a multitude of musical genres, including:
“Just Feel Better” from Santana’s 2005 album All That I Am with Aerosmith lead singer, Steven Tyler
“No Llores,” from Gloria Estefan’s 2007 album, 90 Milas, is a perfect blend of Estefan’s beautiful voice with Santana’s impressive guitar playing.
“The Game of Love,” from Santana’s 2002 album Shaman with Michelle Branch, singer and songwriter, formerly of The Wreckers, earned the two a Grammy Award for “Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals.” Santana also collaborated with Tina Turner, on a version of the song that was released in 2007 on his album Ultimate Santana.
“The Calling,” from Santana’s 1999 album, Supernatural, brought together two guitar legends, Santana and Eric Clapton, and showcased their different styles of guitar playing. It won a Grammy in 2000 for “Best Rock Instrumental Performance.”
“You Are My Kind,” from Shaman, featured Santana and singer Seal in a superb fusion of soul and rock.
“While My Guitar Gently Weeps,” from Santana’s 2010 album, Guitar Heaven: The Greatest Guitar Classics of All Time, was a soulful collaboration between Santana, Indie. Arie, and classical cellist, Yo Yo Ma – a beautiful tribute to George Harrison.
Probably the most well-known collaboration was between Carlos Santana and Matchbox 20’s Rob Thomas. “Smooth,” released in 1999 on Supernatural, was a monster of a hit and was ranked No. 2. Hot 100 songs of all time.