Las Vegas Sun

April 24, 2014

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The Santana Verses

Make way for Carlos Santana, heading into the Hard Rock hotel-casino at 8 p.m. today, Saturday and Sunday for a helping of "world music."

For Santana, the definition of "world music" is: skillfully blending elements of 12-bar blues, fiery rock riffs and sensuous Afro-Cuban rhythms. Featuring his unique guitar style, Santana believes this definition now describes his music.

Santana's lifelong love affair with music began during childhood, while growing up in the village of Autlan, Mexico. Santana's father was an accomplished mariachi violinist who taught his son the basics of music theory and the value of a more traditional music. It was after that when Santana set his sights on being a rock musician.

After developing his style on the streets of Tijuana and San Francisco in the late '50s and early '60s, the Santana Blues Band debuted in San Francisco in '66 and was popular enough to get the opportunity to play the fabled Woodstock festival in '69.

Since Santana's self-titled album in '69, he has racked up 23 albums. His latest, "Live at The Fillmore," was released in early '97. The album is a double CD featuring tracks recorded over four nights during the Santana Band's '68 performance at the Fillmore West in San Francisco.

During his career, Santana also racked up a 1988 Grammy Award for best rock instrumental performance, as well as numerous Bammys (Bay Area Music Award) as best guitarist and musician of the year. In '97, Santana, along with the late Bill Graham and Jerry Garcia, was elected to the Bammy Hall of Fame. He also earned CBS Records' Crystal Globe Award for selling 10 million albums or more and, in '96, received the Billboard Century Award, the magazine's highest honor for creative achievement.

Santana has eight gold and seven platinum albums, with his debut album, "Santana," going double platinum and "Abraxas" going quadruple-platinum.

Santana has performed concerts in more than 50 countries, including the first American-Soviet rock concert, "Rock 'n' Roll Summit," and also appeared in the film "La Bamba."

Clearly, "world music" is a major part of Santana's world of music.

Tickets for Santana's concerts are $75.25, $55.25 and $30.25, plus a $2 facility fee, and can be purchased at the Hard Rock box office or at any Ticketmaster location. For more information, call 693-5000.

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