On Sunday, August 20th, Carlos Santana and his ensemble graced Atlantic City’s Borgata Event Center with their sound. The band averaged about ten musicians on stage at a time, including Carlos’ son, Salvador. Santana’s shows require a ton of effort and illustrate how much these musicians care about giving their fans an amazing time.
The audience was hit with “Corazon Espinado” early on in the set. The response was filled with standing up and boogieing down. Carlos told the audience he’s here to carry on the music of legends; Bob Marley and Bob Dylan are just a couple names from his well-curated list. Right before this he covered Stevie Wonder’s, “Higher Ground’ and John Coltrane’s, “A Love Supreme.”
I have to give a shout out to the guy who runs Santana his guitars. Simply put, I’m impressed at how often he had to run back and forth. Dare I say he’s a glorified water-boy?
Leading up to the encore we were given, “Oye Como Va” and “Black Magic Woman.” “Mona Lisa,” was in there too, which Carlos had the crowd contributing vocally. My favorite comment was right before he had the men participate. Carlos told the guys in the crowd that if they sing along the girls would be responding, “Si Papi.”
Santana spoke to the crowd about how too many people are living a virtual life, moments later he snatched a woman’s cellphone, jokingly. She was trying to snap a photo but came away with something better, a story. He had a lot to say and you could tell he really wanted people to live a more genuine life, or as he put “real.” That’s why people go see Santana, to have a real experience, and I guarantee everyone there did!
Let me tell you about how breathtaking the encore was. It started with a drum solo from three different percussionists. I wish I had a timer to tell you how long they went on for, but I was way too lost in the tunes. Cindy Blackman concluded the solo, and hands down, gave the best drum solo I have ever seen in my life. Nothing even comes close. Carlos went around and introduced the band members. Salvador rapped and killed it on the keys. Tommy Anthony, on guitar, covered a bit of The Police’s, “Roxanne,” which had the crowd singing along. I could spend all day talking about the band members, but you should go see them for yourselves. They ended on, “Smooth” giving us a two and a half hour set.