Our resident reporter Khalid Wani has this incredible habit of showing up whenever there's something new happening around town, and then assaulting us with a welcome overload of information, from videos, articles, interviews, photos, love notes, and what not. This time, he was in attendance at Carlos Santana's performance at the Galgotia University, New Delhi, on October 28, and managed to capture him and Soulmate quite splendidly. That's not all though; he also got to have a little chat with Santana himself at the press conference before the gig. Scroll below for a short but quite spectacular interview and the best shots from the night.
Khalid Wani: How important is it to make faces while playing the guitar?
Carlos Santana: If you're not making ugly faces, if your face is really nice and gentle when you're playing a solo, you're not doing anything. When you're having sex and you're just about to reach that point, if you're not making an ugly face, you're faking it. You simply can't fake an orgasm. If you feel uncomfortable with that, I'm sorry for you.
KW: Have you ever tried the amp modelling software options or do you go the 'old-school' way?
CS: Old school any day! For me, what I personally feel is that if you think you can sound great plugged into a computer, then I've got bad news for you: there's nothing like a Marshall amp or a Mesa. If you believe that you can achieve that sound on your computer, you're defeating yourself and you don’t even know it. I need the real thing. Ain't no substitute for the real deal! (laughs)
KW: Usually guitar players don't go out and marry their drummers. We hear that you proposed to Cindy Blackman (drummer for Lenny Kravitz) on stage?
CS: Actually, it was the other way around. She proposed to me on stage (laughs). Well, I love who Cindy is. We both love the same things. It’s amazing! We have the same taste in music as well. So when we get in the car, we always say, ‘Turn it up! Louder!’ It’s great to be with a female partner who doesn't say ‘Oh my ears are hurting, blah blah.’
KW: You and PRS Guitars go a long way! Please tell us something about it.
CS: Mr. Paul Reed came to one of my shows in ‘78 and said, ‘I made this guitar for you and I want you to try it.’ So I did. It was pretty evident that the man was eager to do something huge in life. And give birth to something that was very different from Fender or Gibson at that time. His dream became a reality.
'Tis all about L-O-V-E when it comes to Soulmate.
...And some sing-along blues too.
Don't worry, we're just gettin' started.
What the...Santana jamming with Soulmate.
Hugs and tears. C'mon, we'd bawl too if Santana jammed with us.
Rudy Wallang of Soulmate whipping up some guitar frenzy.
Tipriti (Soulmate) in her elements.
Contrary to popular opinion, those glorious moustaches are, in fact, real. We tried pulling.
Right back at ya.
Holy shitballs, is that a flying guitar?
Finally, the great master.
The Santana ensemble ably doing their bit for the music.
"The flying guitar's over my head now. What the hell, Carlos?"
"You can stand and play? Well, so can I."
That moment of pure bliss...
Sure thing, braw.
Andy Vargas crooning away.
Smooth as silk.
Cindy Blackman. What a blistering drum solo.
Photography by Khalid Wani
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