The guitar is one of the most popular instruments on the planet, but few people have been able to channel their soul into the instrument as seamlessly as virtuoso Carlos Santana. Santana has been churning out six-string infused hits since the beginning of his career in the late 1960s. He was the first artist to popularize latin influences in modern music. Santana has maintained relevance in popular culture by collaborating with modern artists on hit songs. Even with seven albums, ten Grammy awards, and an unforgettable legacy under his belt, Carlos Santana shows no signs of ever stopping.
Carlos Santana Net Worth – $40 Million
Carlos Santana has achieved the pinnacle of excellence in guitar playing, so much so that his name rings a bell to even the most clueless of pop culture buffs. He has sold over 100 million albums total and has crafted countless number 1 hits. Millions of people pay to see him play live. The legendary guitarist has amassed a seven figure fortune from playing his guitar alone!
While other artists of the 70s and 80s have gradually faded from the public eye, Carlos Santana has remained a household name by collaborating with popular artists. Since 1969, he has appeared in 49 albums as a featured guitarist. His ability to blend latin influence with modern music has made him extremely popular.
Carlos Santana is famously sponsored by Paul Reed Smith guitars. Santana was partially responsible for the brand’s success. After picking up a prototype, demand for PRS guitars skyrocketed. Since 1988, PRS guitars have sponsored Santana. He is also sponsored by amplifier company Mesa/Boogie.
How Did Carlos Santana Earn his Money and Wealth?
Carlos Santana was born on July 20th, 1970 in Autlán de Navarro, Jalisco, Mexico. He is one of six children born to parents Jose Santana and Josefina Barragan. His father Jose was a mariachi violinist who shared his love of music with his children. His full name is Carlos Augusto Alves Santana.
Jose Santana taught Carlos how to play the violin when he just 5 years old. Carlos would later pick up the guitar at age 8, and ultimately abandoned violin for it. He was greatly inspired by American music during his youth. His appreciation of guitarists like B.B King combined with the traditional Mexican music he grew up with would help him craft his unique sound.
When Carlos Santana was roughly 12 years old, his family moved to San Francisco. He lived in the Mission District and attended Mission High School. Carlos was accepted to Humboldt State University and California State University. However, he chose not to go to college. His true passion was on stage, not in the classroom.
Ever since Carlos Santana was a young boy, he was active in the San Francisco music scene. Carlos blended his latin roots with rock and blues music. He quickly built a name for himself in the San Francisco music scene. However, Carlos still had to work hard to make a comfortable living. He busked and washed dishes to make ends meet as he followed his dream.
Carlos Santana became famous almost instantaneously in a sudden strain of coincidences all on the very same day in 1969. While attending a concert at famous promoter Bill Graham’s venue Fillmore West, Carlos was chosen to play in an improvised band. The scheduled performer of the night, Paul Butterfield, was too drunk to sing. After their performance, Bill Graham was so impressed that he signed the improvised band on the spot.
Santana became wildly popular after performing at the legendary Woodstock music festival in 1969. Initially named The Carlos Santana Blues band, the name was later changed to Santana. Carlos would remain the only consistent member of the band, picking and choosing musicians. They released a self-titled album in 1969, which received mixed reviews. The band released their second album, Abraxas, in 1970.
In 1971, Santana released their second eponymous album Santana III, which received much better reviews than their first. The band was churning out records at an astonishing rate, but the heavy workload put them under much pressure. Just before release of their fourth album Caravanserai in 1973, Carlos Santana kicked out several band members and kicked off his solo career with the release of Love Devotion Surrender with guitarist Mahavishnu John McLaughlin. Carlo’s collaboration with John McLaughlin inspired him to incorporate Indian influences and spirituality into his later solo albums.
Later in 1973, Santana released their fifth album Lotus. Through the remainder of the 1970s, they followed that release with the albums Borboletta (1974), Amigos (1976), Moonflower (1977), Inner Secrets (1978) and Marathon (1979). Carlos Santana himself released his solo albums Illuminations and Oneness: Silver Dreams – Golden Reality in 1974 and 1979 respectively.
In the 1980s, Carlos Santana released the solo albums The Swing of Delight (1980), Havana Moon (1983), and Blues for Salvador (1987). He was also a guest on several hit singles, a trend that would continue until the present day. Throughout the 80s, his band released the albums Zebop (1981), Shango (1982), Beyond Appearances (1985), and Freedom (1989).
In 1990, Santana signed to Polygor records after over 22 years over with Columbia. The band released the album Milagro in 1992 before going on a brief hiatus. Santana released his solo album Santana Brothers in 1994. The album featured his younger brother Jorge Santana.
It wasn’t until 1999 that Santana became a truly unforgettable band. That year, they released the album Supernatural. The album once again catapulted them into the public eye, and ultimately won 8 Grammy awards. Supernatural sold over 30 million copies and hit the top 10 spot in 10 countries. Carlos Santana put his solo career on the backburner to build on his newfound success with Santana. In following years, Santana released Shaman (2002), All That I Am (2005), and Guitar Heaven (2010). They also released Shape Shifter (2012), Corazon (2014), and Santana IV (2016). In 2017, Carlos Santana released Power of Peace, his first solo album since Santana Brothers in 1994.
Carlos Santana Personal Life and FAQs
In 1965, Carlos Santana became a naturalized American Citizen. He married his first wife Deborah King in 1973 and had three children with her. He married jazz drummer Cindy Blackman in 2010. His children’s names are Salvador, Stella, and Angelica.
Carlos Santana resides in Los Angeles, California. He has purchased multiple mansions in the area. He loves modern architecture, and many of his residences suit those tastes. His most recent purchase was a $6 million dollar mansion across the street from his other $4 million dollar mansion. Both homes use modern technology to automate almost everything in them. Carlos owns a small fleet of luxury cars, including brands such as BMW, Aston Martin, and Rolls Royce.
In the late 1970’s, Carlos Santana was approached by Paul Reed Smith. Paul Reed Smith was a young luthier who had built guitars for several other notable guitarists, but his company was still struggling. After Carlos Santana began to play his guitars, demand for PRS guitars skyrocketed. PRS is now one of the most highly regarded brands in the world thanks in part to Carlos Santana.