Santana‘s new studio album, Santana IV, not only features a reunion of most of the influential Latin-rock band’s original members, but also a guest appearance by legendary soul/R&B singer Ron Isley, who lends his talents to a pair of tunes. However, Carlos Santana recently revealed that those tunes — “Love Makes the World Go Round” and “Freedom in Your Mind” — are just the tip of the iceberg from the collaboration.
“In the fall, we recorded 16 songs with Ronnie Isley, and they’re absolutely incredible,” Carlos told ABC Radio.
The guitar great then went on to shower praise on Isley, placing his name alongside some of the iconic music artists of his time.
“I’m not afraid to say that he is more important to me or as important to me as the Statue of Liberty and the Golden Gate,” gushed Carlos. “Ronnie Isley is that magnanimous of a singer. When you’re in the room and you hear him sing…like Pavarotti or Placido Domingo, those notes are coming from way down there in the earth and all the way in the sky. He is supremely important, and anyone who’s alive right now is already blessed they were alive with him, you know, like a [John] Coltrane or a Miles Davis.”
Santana says his appreciation of Isley’s music dates back to The Isley Brothers‘ classic original 1962 version of “Twist and Shout.”
“The Beatles came and invaded us at The Ed Sullivan Show singing ‘Twist and Shout,’ [but it was] nowhere as good as The Isley Brothers,” Carlos maintained. “I mean, let’s just be fair, OK? It was cute and it was nice, but it was not the same thing. When you hear Ronnie Isley sing ‘Twist and Shout,’…it was like, ‘Dang!’ you know?”
While no release date has been announced yet for Santana’s collaborative album with Isley, Carlos recently told Billboard that it likely will arrive in the fall of this year.
As previously reported, Santana IV features contributions from original singer/keyboardist Gregg Rolie, drummer Michael Shrieve and percussionist Michael Carabello, as well as from Journey guitarist Neal Schon, who was a member of Santana during the early 1970s. The album debuted at #5 on the Billboard 200.
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