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Freedom

Santana

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Album Review

Freedom marked several reunions in the Santana band, which was now a nonet. In addition to Carlos, the band consisted of percussionists Armando Pereza, Orestes Vilato, and Raul Rekow; returning drummer Graham Lear; bassist Alphonso Johnson; returning keyboardist Tom Coster, keyboardist Chester Thompson, and, on lead vocals, Buddy Miles, who had made a duet album with Santana 15 years before. Credited as an "additional musician" was keyboard player Greg Rolie, an original member. The music also marked a return from the hyper-pop sound of Val Garay on Beyond Appearances to a more traditional Santana Latin rock style. Thus, Freedom was a literal return to form.

Biography

Formed: 1966 in San Francisco, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Santana is the primary exponent of Latin-tinged rock, particularly due to its combination of Latin percussion (congas, timbales, etc.) with bandleader Carlos Santana's distinctive, high-pitched lead guitar playing. 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. The musical direction then changed to a more contemplative and jazzy style as the band's early personnel...
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