Santana on Good Morning America

Santana is more than just a band.

For more than 30 years, the musical group led by Carlos Santana has been creatively blending rock 'n roll with blues-driven elements, Afro-Cuban rhythms, and other world sounds.

Nowadays, the band, which performed live with special guests Michelle Branch, Alex Band and Angelique Kidjo on Good Morning America from New York City's Bryant Park today, is more like a musical movement that has taken another generation by storm.

Supernatural Success

Santana's popularity exploded after his electrifying performance at the original 1969 Woodstock Festival. In 1999, Santana became popular with a younger generation of music lovers with the CD Supernatural, which has sold 25 million copies worldwide.

Supernatural won nine Grammys, including album of the year, best rock album, record of the year and song of the year for the song "Smooth," Santana's collaboration with Matchbox Twenty's Rob Thomas.

On 2002's Shaman, Carlos Santana shared the microphone with an eclectic mix of artists, from Macy Gray to Placido Domingo to the rap-metal band P.O.D. Driven by the chart-topping Michelle Branch song "The Game of Love," Shaman went double platinum shortly after its release.

For his latest CD, Shaman, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member enlisted leading young music artists to sing with him.

On GMA, Santana and Michelle Branch sang their chart topper "Game of Love," while Alex Band, lead singer of The Calling, sang "Why Don't You and I," with Santana played guitar.

In addition, Angelique Kidjo, a solo artist who explores the musical kinship between Africa and Brazil in her latest CD Black Ivory Soul, sang "Adouma," a song she wrote with Santana.

Santana's Roots

Santana was introduced to music when he was just 5 years old and living in a Mexican village called Autlan.

Santana's father, an accomplished mariachi violinist, trained Santana in traditional musical form and theory.

When his family moved to the border town of Tijuana in 1955, Santana took up guitar and was influenced by the sounds of B.B. King, John Lee Hooker, T. Bone Walker and other musicians that he heard on the radio.

Santana then began performing with local bands in Tijuana. In 1961, he moved to San Francisco, joining his family, who had relocated to the States. It was there that he met other musicians who appreciated his unique sound and formed the Santana Blues Band in 1966.

Santana is currently on the U.S. leg of his current tour through August 2003.

Michelle Branch will return to GMA for her own summer concert in the park on July 18.

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