|On July 20,
1947 at 2am, Jose Santana, a professional musician and his
wife Josefina Barragan at 2am added a fourth child to their growing family
in the small Mexico of Autlan De Navarro in the Mexican state of Jalisco.
When he was born, his aunt told his mother he was cristalino, or someone who would make a mark. His mother thought he would enter the church. They named him Carlos.
His father, as a professional mariachi
violinist, would travel a lot, sometimes as long as year. Between trips he
began teaching his talented son the violin at the age of five.
|1961: Tijuana, Mexico|
|Jose moves to
San Francisco, CA, but the rest of the Santana family stays in
Tijuana. Josefina takes Carlos to see the T.J.'s at the Palacio
Municipal. Meeting with Javier Batiz, leader of the T.J.'s. Jose sends
Carlos his first electric guitar, a L5 Gibson. He joins the T.J.'s,
and also plays bass in another band, The Strangers. Carlos gets a
steady job at the Convoy Club on Avenida Revolucion.
In February of 2000, the 52-year-old Carlos Santana admitted on television to having been a victim of sexual abuse as a boy. He said he was molested over a two-year period from the age of 11.
merican man who gave him presents brought him across the border from Tijuana, Mexico, and molested him "almost every other day" between the ages of 10 and 12, he told the magazine. "My first encounter with sexuality was not a pleasant one or romantic or tender or wonderful," he is quoted as saying in the March 16 issue. "It was more like a shock kind of thing; gross, disgusting shock." At his wife's urging, Santana entered therapy in 1995 to help him deal with the abuse. "You want to get angry with yourself for not knowing better," he reportedly said. "The mind has a very insidious way of making you feel guilty: You're the guilty party, shame on you, you're the one who brought this on yourself."
|Tijuana, Mexico/San Francisco, CA|
|1962: Josefina and the rest of the Santana family, except Carlos, join Jose in San Francisco. Later, Carlos joins them for three months, but returns to Tijuana on Wednesday Oct 31.|
|1963: San Francisco, CA|
Antonio bring Carlos back to San Francisco for good. He attends James
Lick Junior High School. Carlos plays in a local band with no name
that reaches the top three in the final round of a radio station
contest at the Cow Palace.
eventually followed his family from Mexico to San Francisco, where he
was encouraged by an insightful high school teacher.
http://www.milagrofoundation.org/ Carlos Santana in the mid-Sixties
heroes when you were growing up?
He began performing with local bands like The T.J.s, adding
his own personal flair to the popular songs of the 1950s. As he
continued playing with different bands up and down the bustling
'Tijuana Strip,' Carlos Santana began to hone his considerable skills
and invent his inimitable sound.
|On February 27th 2001 The mayor of Autlan, the town where
Santana was born, ARMANDO PEREZ gave
Santana the keys to Autlan De Navarro where his father was a
Santana told the news conference that he learned to play music in Autlan's church Parroquia del Divino Salvador and he expanded his learning to Tijuana's bordellos.
Later he played with the Latin Rock Band Maná before a delighted crowd in the newly dedicated Carlos Santana Civic Plaza, where a life size statue of Carlos Santana was revealed, along with a bust of his father Jose Santana, a Mariachi violinist of great local renown.
Autlán also announced that it hopes to purchase Santana's birth home to house a future Carlos Santana Museum
He started learning and emulating sounds of artists like B. B. King, T-Bone Walker and John Lee Hooker. He began playing in several local bands along the strip at age eleven. Carlos arrived in San Francisco's Mission District in the early sixties, rejoining his family, which had moved a year earlier.
In San Francisco he discovered a thriving cultural scene with a diversity of musical styles, including jazz, blues, international folk music, and classical salsa by the likes of Tito Puente and Eddie Palmieri SI validated my existence before I got out of high school. People would ask, "What are you going to do when you leave school?" I'd say, "I'm going to play with Michael Bloomfield and B.B. King." They thought I was crazy! I'd say, "Why are you laughing?" They'd say, "Man, you're tripping." "No, you're tripping because you don't know what you want to do. I know what I want to do, and I know who I'm going to be doing it with. And I'm going to play with those people."
Once you learn to validate your existence, you have the wind in your sails -- where do you want to go? -- and you can never commit suicide.GP Aug99
antana had a musical revelation at the Fillmore West in San Francisco in 1966, where he saw B.B. King for the first time which inspired his own famous tone on the guitar
"It was B.B.'s first time at the Fillmore, and he got a standing ovation before he even began playing," Santana told Guitar World's Alan DiPerna. "He was so moved that he started crying. And I remember, because of the way the light was hitting him, all you could see was the glitter of tears in his eyes and the diamonds on his rings when he put his hand up to his face. And when you were a kid who'd just come up from Tijuana and felt like you didn't know anything, that kind of thing really hit you. B.B. King hit the note and it changed everything for me. I said, `That's it. There's the sound I've been searching for.' I felt like a kid chasing the circus." Santana added that part of what King's playing taught him was to think in terms of the individual note. "A note is like a rose," he said. "It can be closed, or halfway open, or all the way in bloom. You have to know when to hit that note the right way-choose how each note is going to be. It's like being a gardener. You want to present the best possible bouquet."
graduating In San Francisco he found colourful and rich musical atmosphere which helped in evolving his unique guitar-style. Not long after that life-changing night at the Fillmore, Santana put together the Santana Blues Band. (Two years later, the band played a triumphant four-night stand at the legendary venue. Portions of those shows have just been released by Legacy Recordings in a two-CD set titled Live at the Fillmore West.)
Santana: Anyway, I learned a lot in Tijuana, and by the time I came to the Fillmore, what I was doing was very different than the Grateful Dead or Jefferson Airplane or Creedence Clearwater or Sly. And by the time I unconsciously infused the things I learned with the Afro-Cuban music, it had a big impact because it was different than everything else. We gave birth to something that was in between a lot of things — rock, jazz, African music, Latin music. Miles Davis and Tito Puente would come around and they encouraged me, which meant everything to me when I was young. Miles used to say [he imitates the famous raspy whisper] “Oh man, I love that song…” talking about “Incident at Neshabur.” So that was some of my first real validation.
In 1966 he formed a band with his friends Gregg Rolie, Gus Rodriguez, Michael Carabello, naming it The Santana Blues Band. The group was the last major act to emerge from the psychedelic San Francisco music scene of the 1960s and it enjoyed massive success at the end of the decade and into the early '70s.
Interview with Carlos Santana -the early years
An interview by Steve Heilig.
(Whole Earth Summer 2000