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Rock Music — August 19, 2012 3:13 pm
‘That might happen’: Gregg Rolie confirms talks for a reunion with Carlos Santana
Gregg Rolie had become so estranged from Carlos Santana by the time they were set to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame that he almost didn’t attend. They’re apparently inching closer to reconciliation now.
Interviewed while part of the recently completed tour of Ringo Starr’s latest All-Starr Band, Rolie didn’t rule out a reunion with Santana, something that would reconstitute one of the late 1960s and early 1970s most intriguing musical partnerships.
[ONE TRACK MIND: Gregg Rolie shares insights into songs from across his Rock and Roll Hall of Fame career, some famous and some obscure.]
The Santana band burst into the national consciousness when their explosive 11-minute instrumental “Soul Sacrifice” at Woodstock became one of the festival’s defining moments. 1969′s Santana went two-times platinum, yielding the tracks “Evil Ways” and “Jingo”; 1970′s Abraxas was five-times platinum on the strength of “Black Magic Woman”; and Santana III went two-times platinum behind “No One To Depend On” in 1971.
By then, however, Rolie — and second Santana guitarist Neal Schon — were growing increasingly disenchanted with the band’s turn away from hard rock and Latin grooves toward fusion jazz. Rolie and Schon would leave to form Journey, and Rolie continued there until the turn of the 1980s. After some time away for family, Rolie has begun to build his own solo career, but his time with Santana remains a signature part of his musical life — even if Carlos Santana hasn’t.
Last year’s Rolie EP Five Days included a new take on “Black Magic Woman,” and he ended up performing a series of songs from his time in the group while on tour with Starr, as well. That’s led to new speculation about a reunion for the Santana band in some quarters, and Rolie has now confirmed that it’s a possibility.
“That might happen,” Rolie told UTSanDiego.com. “I’ve been talking to Carlos, so we’ll see where that goes. He gave me a call, and I have to call him back when I get done with this whole Ringo thing.”
Rolie has resumed solo dates in the meantime, playing tonight, August 19, 2012, at the Columbia Gorge Hotel in Hood River, Oregon; then August 29 at the Lakes Performing Arts Center in Okoboji, IA; and October 31 at the Iridium in New York City with Alan Haynes. For additional dates, go to http://www.greggrolie.com/news.html