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Carlos Santana: Hymns For Peace

Carlos Santana: Hymns For Peace [Live At Montreux 2004]

 
PERSONNEL:

Carlos Santana – Guitar and Vocals
The New Santana Band

With Guest Artists:

John McLaughlin – Guitar
Wayne Shorter – Sax
Herbie Hancock – Piano
Chick Corea – Electric Piano
Ravi Coltrane – Sax
Angelique Kidjo – Vocals
And others…

DISC 1:
1. Intro
2. Afro Blue
3. Adouma
4. Redemption Song
5. Exodus / Get Up Stand Up
6. Blowin’ In The Wind / A Place In The Sun
7. Just Like A Woman
8. What’s Going On

DISC 2:
1. Peace On Earth / Boogie Woman
2. Why Can’t We Love Together
3. Light At The Edge Of The World
4. Let Us Go Into The House Of The Lord
5. The Banana Boat Song
6. Day Of Celebration
7. Ah Sweet Dancer / In A Silent Way
8. Jingo
9. A Love Supreme
10. Ode To Joy

Bonus Tracks:
One Love
Imagine
Give Peace A Chance

Bonus Feature:
The Inspiration For Hymns For Peace
An Interview With Carlos Santana

Running time: approx 183 minutes

This DVD set was recorded at the Montreux Jazz Festival on July 15, 2004. The concept and concert were the idea of Carlos Santana in collaboration with festival director Claude Nobs. According to Carlos, the songs were a selection of “spiritual music that brings harmony, unity and peace to the listener.” With a little help from an extraordinary line-up of guests, Carlos was able to produce a very special event. The entire concert is presented on this DVD.

I make no secret that I kneel at the altar that is John McLaughlin. He’s on a DVD – I get the DVD. When this set arrived, I skimmed it and went straight to the pieces that I couldn’t wait to hear. But let me say that my narrow focus in no way reflects the quality of the material. There is a LOT of great music on this DVD, and I’ll eventually get to the rest of it after I play my favorite pieces to death.

A quick note on the production: the concert was recorded in high definition in widescreen format, and looks great! The audio is also superb. I can’t comment on the stereo mix, but the DTS 5.1 surround sound is kickin’! (There is also a Dolby surround sound audio option, as well). With all of that percussion, drums, horns, vocals, and as many as three keyboards going at the same time, you can still hear a lot of minute details in the mix. Just a great job on the audio!

For the concert, Carlos and The New Santana Band acted as the “house band”, and the guest artists would play along in various line-ups. Apparently there was only one day for rehearsals, which is amazing given some of the performances. Pressing the play button, I skipped the intro and went to:

‘Afro Blue’: Corea and Hancock on pianos, Shorter on tenor and Ravi Coltrane on soprano sax; McLaughlin and Carlos on guitars, and the entire Santana band with Chester Thompson on organ and Dennis Chambers on drums. You should have gotten a “chubby” after reading that line-up. It’s a crowded stage, but Carlos acts as a conductor and cues everyone for their solo. Hancock and Coltrane are especially joyous in their playing.

‘Adouma’: singer Angelique Kidjo joins the above line-up and once they kick-off this funky tune, it doesn’t let up. Kidjo starts dancing during Corea’s solo…and somehow he kept playing.

‘Let Us Go Into The House Of The Lord’: from the 1973 Santana/McLaughlin collaboration “Love Devotion Surrender”. Carlos even calls McLaughlin Mahavishnu. On this piece, Carlos reminds you that he really did play the guitar at one time. McLaughlin has a bandaged finger, but doesn’t let that get in the way of his dishing out the passion. Not a guitar smackdown, but for me, this song alone made this DVD worth getting.

‘Day Of Celebration’: the ensemble get into a groove and take things up a notch. Shorter honks his ass off, Hancock conjures, and McLaughlin starts feelin’ it. Then it gets even better…

‘In A Silent Way’: Shorter blows soprano on the intro. Then Chambers kicks off the funk. Johhny Mac is simmering; Hancock is just fantastic; Wayne is scramblin’ eggs; and Chambers tops things with a nasty drum solo. Wait, there’s more…

‘A Love Supreme’: the finale with everyone onstage! Chaos ensues, but it actually adds to the majesty of the song. Just beautiful stuff!

Just based on the songs I listened to, I would highly recommend this DVD. Add in the rest of the performances, and it turns into a really gotta have DVD.

Carlos Santana: Hymns For Peace

Carlos Santana: Hymns For Peace

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