Saturday, July 24, 2010

The Sparkle of Santana DVX Wine

What do you do when you've at least popularized (if not virtually invented) Latin rock, helped to develop an entire culture of amplifier technology, toured the world with a smokin' band for more than four decades, played for half a million people zonked out of your mind, and launched a career renaissance the like of which has not been seen in the history of the music industry?

You launch your own private wine label, of course!

As most people know, the first paragraph refers to Carlos Santana's ground-breaking musical style, first seen by a wide audience at Woodstock in 1969. Not to mention his involvement with Mesa Boogie amplifiers, the legendary Santana live show, and the phenomenal popularity of 1999's Supernatural.

What may not be quite as familiar, though, is the Santana DVX Sparkling Wine that was produced by the Mumm Winery in Napa Valley, California. Issued in 2000, the combination of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay vintages was the brainchild of Carlos, his then wife Deborah Santana, and winemaker Ludovic Dervin.

Of course, it was introduced to on a broader scope than it might otherwise have been, due to a little ditty titled, appropriately, "Santana DVX," by a rap/comedy band called The Lonely Island. Complete with clever, albeit raunchy, lyrics, the song became quite a smash in the social media-sphere.

Unfortunately, the wine was issued on a very limited basis, and is long gone. No word of a sequel has been released, although with this run Carlos Santana has been on, you never know!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Drummer Cindy Blackman to Wed Carlos Santana

It must have been a stunned crowd that witnessed Carlos Santana's very public proposal to this then girlfriend (now fiancee): drummer Cindy Blackman. Obviously a lot more than that audience bargained for In Tinsley, Park, Illinois, on the July 9, 2010 show of the Universal Tone Tour.

Blackman, although primarily a vetted jazz percussionist, is possibly best known for her 11-year stint with Lenny Kravitz. As such, she showed she was a master of groove as well as swing. This may be the general public's introduction to the groundbreaking drummer, but in the jazz scene, especially, she has long been a fixture.

And with numerous albums under her belt, she can claim status as a composer as well.

Her gig with Santana's band adds Latin rock music to her resume, and seems to be just another step in Blackman's self-proclaimed goal of virtuosity. Congratulations to the happy couple!