Carlos Santana Celebrates 'Supernatural' Reissue, Talks Covers Album
Rock guitar legend Carlos Santana is celebrating the 10th anniversary of his breakthrough "Supernatural" album -- which won nine Grammy Awards and has sold more than 25 million copies worldwide -- with a "Supernatural: Legacy Edition" that includes a second disc of rare and unreleased material. It's the touchstone for "Supernatural Santana: A Trip Through the Hits," which resumes its residency at the Joint in the Las Vegas Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on April 21. And Santana and Sony Music Entertainment chief Clive Davis are working the same magic again on a new collaborative, thematic album that's due out later this year.
"I think if there's anything about 'Supernatural' it's an affirmation that people trust me," Santana tells Billboard.com about the album that paired him with collaborators such as Rob Thomas, Dave Matthews, Everlast, Lauryn Hill, Product C&B and Eric Clapton. "All those musicians, artists, writers, engineers, producers, lawyers, accountants...It was like a parade of roses and I'm in front, in the middle and in the end."
Santana says the Las Vegas show has also impressed upon him the impact "Supernatural" has made on his career. "It has allowed me to see Carlos from a different, ariel view," he explains, "because every day, in a tangible way, I get to see people spend money on an airplane, on a hotel, on a ticket, on a restaurant -- I mean, it's a whole way of validating what I've been doing, and I didn't know. I used to say, 'Well, I'm just trying to get to the next note and make it true. But by stopping in Las Vegas, it allowed me to really be more present. And by facing all the things that I said I would never do, it allowed me to see that I am less with fear and more with trusting, which is love."
Santana hopes to keep the love going on his next album, another project overseen by Davis that continues the guest-laden path of "Supernatural," "Shaman" (2002) and "All That I Am" (2005) -- only this time adding iconic rock songs to the mix. Among those are Cream's "Sunshine of Your Love" with Thomas, the Beatles' "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" with India.Arie and Yo-Yo Ma, Jimi Hendrix's "Little Wing" with Joe Cocker, the Rolling Stones' "Can't You Hear Me Knocking " with Scott Weiland, Deep Purple's "Smoke on the Water" and Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Fortunate Son."
"We're not comparing or competing with those artists -- we're complementing them," Santana says. "But when you hear this, you're gonna do 'Damn!' because it sounds so powerful, with vitality and vibrancy. Like Wayne Shorter says, it's completely new, tottally familiar."
No title or release date have been set for the album. Santana is expected to tour in North America and Europe during the late spring and summer.