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Bsbloom Customs - Update: 9/26/20 Soul Sacrifice

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Per request, for this week:




In 1999, Santana went off in a new direction, aiming at a wider audience, aiming for more pop, and less jazz. They released Supernatural, which was mostly collaboration works with other artists. The album was a massive success, with six major singles smashing the charts. Almost every track "featured" somebody famous. The first single released was Smooth, featuring Rob Thomas, from Matchbox Twenty.


Smooth, by the way, is one of two Santana song charts put out by Harmonix. Great, great chart. If you don't have it, buy it! The other Harmonix song is Black Magic Woman. If you don't have that, SKIP IT! That one is a travesty - they took the most iconic Santana song, chopped it off at the half-way point, released just that, and said "let it be enough." It isn't. That butchery still pisses me off.


Put Your Lights On was another hit single, written by Everlast, a dark tune, composed after he had a heart attack, with lyrics like:


Hey now all you children
Leave your lights on
You better leave your lights on
Because there's a monster
Living under my bed
Whispering in my ear

Judging from this week, and last, I seem to be stuck on monsters. Oh well.


The drum chart is by AJFOne23.


Video Preview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KCBS5EtszYI


Download: http://customscreators.com/index.php?/page/index.html/_/put-your-lights-on-feat-r26881

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A classic Santana cover this week:




This song was a Beatles hit, written by George Harrison. Santana covered this on their Guitar Heaven double album, from 2010. The song features stunning vocals, by India Arie, moving backing by the incomparable Yo Yo Ma on cello (which I charted to keys), and Carlos on two guitars, acoustic for the first half, then driving electric. A beautiful rendition. Enjoy.


Preview Video:







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For this week:




This is a very old love ballad, and no one seems to know who wrote the song. The song was first recorded by Bo Carter and Papa Charlie McCoy, in 1928. Later, it would become a rock staple, with versions recorded by Big Joe Turner (1956), Bill Haley (1959), Ray Peterson (1960), Dean Martin (1963), and Bob Dylan (1963).


To me, Steppenwolf and love ballads ... they don't exactly go together. Of, if they are going to make a love ballad, it will sound more like Sookie, Sookie, not Corina, Corina. I think they knew this didn't fit their image, and they never released a studio version of Corina.


Still, I think it is a great song, and I am happy to include it in my Steppenwolf list. Plus, I can never resist a love ballad.










See you next Saturday.

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Back to Santana. My last two offerings were Put Your Lights On and While My Guitar Gently Weeps, both from the modern Santana, when the group moved from jazz and Latin to more popular, chart-friendly songs. This shift really dates back to 1978, and the Inner Secrets album. I am going to pull charts from that album for the next few weeks.


First up:




Many of the songs on Inner Secrets were covers of famous pieces, but Open Invitation was a Santana original, written by several members of the group. The tune is also much more pop-friendly than previous Santana hits. Well, pop until near the end when Carlos unleashes a killer solo.


Download: http://customscreators.com/index.php?/page/index.html/_/open-invitation-r27087


Preview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jn-UZwtLfH4

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Next up, from the Inner Secrets album,




Stormy was a huge hit from 1968, by the Classics IV. The song was written by Buddy Buie, writer and producer for the Classics IV, and by James Cobb, their guitarist. The song reached #5 on the US charts. I've always liked that tune, but Santana's version has, well, Santana, and is just better. I think you will agree. Have a Stormy day.


Download: http://customscreators.com/index.php?/page/index.html/_/stormy-r27150


Video Preview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JTGuTkbY7As

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My third release from the Inner Secrets album is



Well All Right was a Buddy Holly hit, released in 1958. It has been covered dozens of times, by many artists. Blind Faith, in 1969, did a version which placed much more emphasis on guitar work. Santana's arrangement follows Blind Faith, rather than Buddy Holly.


Well All Right, like most songs from this album, was a successful single release. Oddly enough, it had its best success in the Netherlands, where it cracked the top 40.


The song fits well on our platform, with a little bit of fun for every instrument. The glory, of course, goes to the guitarist.


Hope you like.


Download: http://customscreators.com/index.php?/page/index.html/_/well-all-right-r27224


Preview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Qd-rgNa8_Y

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Only two of the tracks from Inner Secrets were not released as singles. The album was quite a success, but it did contain the usual debris, two songs that were, well, duds, and not worth pushing as singles. One of these was Dealer/Spanish Rose:




This is a pretty strange evaluation, because, to me, this is the best song on the album. The work combines two songs, Dealer, a minor Traffic hit from 1967, and Spanish Rose, an instrumental written by Carlos. At one point, in Spanish Rose, Carlos Santana, with his guitar, and Chris Rhyne, on keys, duel each other. That back-and-forth is brilliant. I also love the way the two songs are melded together. Musical genius. If you are even a casual Santana fan, you have to try this song out.


AJFOne23 did the drum chart.


I put a little pressure on AJ for this one - told him I wanted to release it in three weeks. He got it to me the next morning!


Download: http://customscreators.com/index.php?/page/index.html/_/dealer-spanish-rose-r27274


Preview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gZ_qxIFG2c4

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Time for my last song from Inner Secrets.


As I mentioned before, most songs off the album were released as singles. The two biggest hits were Open Invitation, and One Chain (Don't Make No Prison)




One Chain is much more disco than typical Santana, and the album version has a long percussion/bass section in the middle, with a real dance feel.


The song is a People song, released in 1970. It was covered, quite successfully, by the Four Tops, a few years later, and then by Santana.


I found the lyrics strange, at least as an author. I rely, quite heavily, on the various lyric sites on the Web when I chart vocals. They are usually quite accurate - much better than my ear. But here, what I thought I heard, and what they claimed I should be hearing, were very different. Frustrating!


Finally, I looked up the lyrics to the Four Tops version, and found, exactly, what I was hearing Santana sing. So, I used those lyrics. It is very puzzling.


The drums, like last week, are by AJFOne23.


Download: http://customscreators.com/index.php?/page/index.html/_/one-chain-dont-make-n-r27337


Preview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_gC24OoIwwg


Next week, maybe a little Sookie?

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For this Saturday, another Steppenwolf release:




Sookie Sookie is the first song off their first album, and one of the three singles released off that debut.


This is a fun song, and fun to play, and a song that most of you have probably heard. Not their best song, or even the best song on their first album, but I like it, and I like it in game mode.


One interesting point about the song: The song changes key mid-way through. This seems to be a Steppenwolf trick. I first noticed it charting Monster, but ascribed that to the fact that Monster was really three smaller songs put together into one long set. But Sookie is one simple song, yet changes speed and key. It reminded me of the Beach Boys - raise the tempo, raise the pitch, and finish big. Steppenwolf, even with their very first song, played fascinating music.


Download: http://customscreators.com/index.php?/page/index.html/_/sookie-sookie-r27392


Preview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KmLrl0bN9Aw

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Starting this week, I am going to turn to Santana's very early days, taking songs off their first album. First up, the wonderful classic, Jingo (or Jin-Go-Lo-Ba).



Jingo was written by Babatunde Olatunji, in 1959, and released on his first album, Drums of Passion. If you are curious, you can listen to this first version here:



Olatunji has commented that he made royalty moneys from only one song off that album, Jingo, of course. A big thanks to Santana.


When I listen to Santana's take on that song, my body wants to dance. I can't help it. The song is dance. A great, great song. There are lyrics, of course, but they simply repeat jingo, and jingo-lo-ba, or, in Olatunji's native tongue, "Don't worry."


Check out this YouTube version of Santana playing the song,




and watch all the dancers. It is magic.


Hope you like some early Santana - more to come next Saturday.


Download: http://customscreators.com/index.php?/page/index.html/_/jingo-r27447

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For this week, also from the debut album,




Persuasion is another real classic, one of the many songs on this album that led Rolling Stone to call this album one of the best albums of all time. Indeed, they put this on their top 500 album list (where it landed at #149). Of course, that was in 2012. In 1969, they weren't so enthusiastic. Their review called this album, "a masterpiece of hollow techniques ... fast, pounding, frantic music with no real content" The reviewer found the music repetitive, unimaginative, backed by a poor rhythm section, and filled with meaningless nonsense for lyrics. I wonder what that reviewer thinks of #150 on that top album list!


Okay, here is my 2020 review: Santana I is one of the best albums of all time, and Persuasion is one of the best songs of that great album.


Download: http://customscreators.com/index.php?/page/index.html/_/persuasion-r27520


Preview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qKXBH7gWWu8

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Finally, I close out Santana I with my personal favorite, Soul Sacrifice.




In this amazing jam piece, every member of the band lets loose. And, as a player, every instrument is set free. The song starts with percussion, drums and bongos. Then comes the classic theme, followed by a beautiful guitar solo. That solo leads into the major break in the song, where the percussion takes over. An amazing bongo solo, followed by an even better drum solo. A solo perfectly charted by AJFOne23 - thank you AJ!


After the break, Carlos gets another turn, a second guitar solo. Then the guitar and drums shift to the background and we hear a fantastic keyboard solo, finishing with a flourish, and a long build-up back to the Soul Sacrifice theme. Perfect song.


Here is a story that I have told before, but one worth repeating. In 1969, the producers of Woodstock decided that they needed to include one of the new San Francisco groups, but they had only one slot left open. The choice boiled down to one of two promising groups, and no one could choose one over the other. So, the decision was decided by a coin flip. Santana won that flip. Santana went on to an amazing career, while the losing group drifted apart, and faded into obscurity.


To become a superstar band, you need real talent, but you also need some luck. Of course, artists always have a hand in making their own luck - as a critic wrote


With absolutely no lyrics, Santana took to wow Woodstock in 1969 with (the) instrumental masterpiece “Soul Sacrifice.” We can only assume that Carlos sacrificed his soul to have gained the ability to play so beautifully, enough to silence the famously non-sober, impressionable Woodstock crowd.

Did they make their own luck through some sort of deal with the devil?


I've seen videos of that Woodstock performance. The audience, hundreds of thousands, were milling about, talking, playing, and barely listening to the stage. Then came Soul Sacrifice, and something clicked. The whole Woodstock world grew silent, and grew rapt. This band of unknowns had arrived, and would never leave.


Download: http://customscreators.com/index.php?/page/index.html/_/soul-sacrifice-r27562


Preview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3F3Cjr32QyI


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