Santana “Abraxas”

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#363 in the Series, and #10 in the Whale Wednesday Series) is Santana, Abraxas

Carlos Santana, Gregg Rolie, David Brown, Michael Shrieve, José “Chepito” Areas and Mike Carabello

To me, those six guys were Santana.  Carlos has gone thru more musicians than any band leader I know, to me however, those six cats were Santana at its best.  In fact, I feel this was the only actual Santana band.  After that it was Carlos and whomever he decided to bring in.  How can I back that statement up? Look who wrote the songs on this. Nearly every one contributed in the writing.  The great Gregg Rolie wrote two.  “Chipito” Areas wrote two, Michael Carabello wrote the opening song.  It truly was a group effort.

The Santana band was stars already when they released this “Whale.”  Drummer Michael Shrieve’s performance at Woodstock saw to that! Abraxas will always be the album that people will remember them for.

“Black Magic Woman” and  “Oye Como Va” were monster hits. They’re still staples in Carlos’ shows to this day.  They were far from being my favorites.  That title is reserved for more of the jamming tunes such as “Samba Pa Ti” and of course Rolie’s “Hope You’re Feeling Better.”

I’d love to see a reunion of this era of the band.  I was lucky enough to find live videos from nearly all the tracks on YouTube. I’ve included them into the playlist below.  BE SURE to check it out. Some great playing and some decent quality as well.

Track listing

  1. “Singing Winds, Crying Beasts” (Carabello) 4:51
  2. “Black Magic Woman/Gypsy Queen” (Green/Szabo) 5:19
  3. “Oye Como Va” (Puente ) 4:17
  4. “Incident at Neshabur” (Gianquinto, Santana) 4:57
  5. “Se a Cabo” (Areas) 2:51
  6. “Mother’s Daughter” (Rolie) 4:26
  7. “Samba Pa Ti” (Santana) 4:45
  8. “Hope You’re Feeling Better” (Rolie) 4:11
  9. “El Nicoya” (Areas) 1:29


  • Carlos Santana – Guitar, Vocals, Producer
  • Gregg Rolie – Keyboards, Lead Vocals
  • David Brown – Bass, Engineer
  • Michael Shrieve – drums
  • José “Chepito” Areas – Percussion, Conga, Timbales
  • Mike Carabello – Percussion, Conga

Check this out! You’ll like it I believe

Posted by Larry Carta

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