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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superior to Supernatural
...I have been a fan of Carlos Santana since my teens over 30 years ago. I have nearly every recording he has released in that time and if I were forced to pick one as the best today it would be "Shaman." I realize this is an initial impression since I have so far heard the CD only one time through, but during that listen I experienced every emotional response that I...
Published on October 23, 2002 by Amazon Customer

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111 of 122 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Carlos Goes Commercial - Say It Ain't So...
I've been a devoted Santana fan for most of his career. Heck, I remember buying his first album on vinyl shortly after it was originally released. I've probably bought more of his releases over the years than any other single artist I follow. I've seen him live many times, going all the way back to the 70's, and always treasured the experiences.
With all that...
Published on October 24, 2002 by R. Herbert


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111 of 122 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Carlos Goes Commercial - Say It Ain't So..., October 24, 2002
By 
R. Herbert (Charlotte, NC USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Shaman (Audio CD)
I've been a devoted Santana fan for most of his career. Heck, I remember buying his first album on vinyl shortly after it was originally released. I've probably bought more of his releases over the years than any other single artist I follow. I've seen him live many times, going all the way back to the 70's, and always treasured the experiences.
With all that said, I was thrilled to see him come back into public aclaim with "Supernatural". While concerned somewhat about the commercialism of that release, it was a fresh enough approach that I could enjoy it, and be happy for Carlos because of the renewed attention it brought him. And for the long-time Santana fan, there was still enough traditional Santana sound there to enjoy.
However, with "Shaman", I feel he goes overboard with the multi-artist/colaborator approach, and at the same time, doesn't infuse enough traditional Santana music in the mix. "Shaman" unfortunately displays the all-too-American approach to marketing: if they liked it the first time, let's do it bigger, louder, and longer next time.
Musically, there's little new here since "Supernatural". Some of the guest artists are really questionable, talent-wise. It seems they just wanted to stuff this CD as full as possible with diverse individuals. Listening to the CD, I was struck by how common most of Carols' guitar licks sounded - it seems I've heard them all before, many times. In itself that isn't a bad thing, but given he's in the support on most of these tracks, it becomes all the more noticable. Sonically, the release suffers on many tracks from the type of compression typically found on commercial pop releases. It's mixed to sound ok on the car radio or an average stereo. Audiophiles with revealing, high-quality systems will lament the lack of sonic potential.
Most disturbing was noticing in the liner notes a page dedicated to plugging "Carlos by Carlos Santana Licensed Products". Everything from women's shoes to sunglasses to inspirational cards. I know that given the complete derth of talent being released by the record companies these days, even a release this commercial from Carlos Santana stands heads above the average. But do they have to hang every commercial opportunity possible on his shoulders? Or is it his choice to allow all this? In any event, it screams "sell out!".
While this CD may garner some Grammy's (unlikey to be as successful as it's predecessor, but given the state of music releases these days, anything's possible), it finds a slightly unwelcome home in this fan's Santana collection. But artists have to grow in their unique ways, and I hope this eventually inspires new, and more fittingly "Santana" creations in the future.
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superior to Supernatural, October 23, 2002
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This review is from: Shaman (Audio CD)
...I have been a fan of Carlos Santana since my teens over 30 years ago. I have nearly every recording he has released in that time and if I were forced to pick one as the best today it would be "Shaman." I realize this is an initial impression since I have so far heard the CD only one time through, but during that listen I experienced every emotional response that I yearn for when I put on a Santana CD. Carlos and his incredible guitar talents have always been able to make my toes curl, my knees feel weak, and bring tears to my eyes. More than one track on this CD has done all three of those for me.
Like "Supernatural" before it, "Shaman" is much more than a Santana CD. There are actually only 4 tracks that are pure Santana songs, the other 12 tracks are collaborations with an impressive array of talented musicians. It is too early to pick a favorite of those but the hard rock track "America," with a band I've never heard of before, P.O.D., had me banging my head like I was 20 years younger, and the final track with opera star (opera?!?) Placido Domingo left me with tears in my eyes.
...As with Supernatural, this CD should "connect the molecules to the light" to quote Carlos, meaning; share with as many people as possible the positive message of peace, compassion and love that is inherit in all Santana music. I am only speaking for myself here, but I think the world today needs to hear that message, and if you choose to get it from this or any other Santana CD, you get the added bonus of being able to dance your buns off to some great music!
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Effective but less than supernatural, October 24, 2002
This review is from: Shaman (Audio CD)
How do you produce a follow-up to the biggest album of your career - make that the biggest album of the decade - and not appear to be doing the same thing all over again? The answer- Don't even bother. After all, if it ain't broke, why fix it? Using that time tested formula, Santana comes up with yet again another eclectic mix of Latin funk that wouldn't have sounded out of place if it was in 'Supernatural'.
At first listen, 'Shaman' comes across as a fresh and varied bag of mostly latin-infused pop tunes, and owing to the success of Supernatural', Carlos Santana managed to get some of the hottest and most talented names in the music industry to lend their vocals to a dozen or so tracks. Most notable are Amoré with Macy Gray, 'You Are My Kind' with Seal and of course the first single 'The Game Of Love' which features a fresh-faced Michelle Branch. 'Game' is a delightfully lithe pop tune that manages put a bounce into your step and a smile to your face. It's that infectious.
Less effective are the forays into anthemic rock ('America' with P.O.D.) and opera ('Novus' with Placido Domingo). Somehow, in what is supposed to be a curious blend of guitar and powerful vocals, the tracks just come off sounding rather mismatched and even weakens the effects of Santana's solo interludes.
The token spanish track as always saves the day. With balladeer Alejandro Lerner on vocals, Santana manages to create a romantically tragic sonnet ('Hoy Es Adios') reminiscent of his earlier works like 'Maria Maria' and 'Black Magic Woman'.
Carlos's trademark guitar improvisational riff is evident throughout the recording but is most effective when there are no vocals to share the stage. Take a listen to instant classics like 'Foo Foo','Let Me Love You Tonight' and especially 'Victory is Won' and you'll see why sometimes, when the music is that good, no lyrics are necessary.
With comparisons to 'Supernatural' inevitable, Santana set out to produce a work that is reminiscent of its gigantic predescessor. As a result, while 'Supernatural' was a love child whose beauty everybody just happened to appreciate, 'Shaman' becomes a genetically enhanced commercial effort that is designed to please the masses.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Santana keeps on rolling, October 30, 2002
By 
Cory D. Slipman (Rockville Centre, N.Y.) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Shaman (Audio CD)
Shaman proves to be a worthy sequel to the magic spun by Carlos Santana in Supernatural. His brand of latin rock has became mainstream enough to bridge the generation gap. Santana exhibits his versatility by melding with a very diverse array of musical talent as featured on his CD. I never thought I'd hear a cut featuring Santana and Placido Domingo but the combination definitely works. The Game of Love featuring Michelle Branch is a guaranteed smash hit single with a beautiful interplay of her soulful voice and Santana's latino guitar riffs.
My own personal musical taste would better be suited by more Latin and less Hip Hop style music on the CD. However,I've been listening to Santana for more than 30 years and his latest production is truly excellent.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Supernatual II, October 28, 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Shaman (Audio CD)
I'm a huge Santana fan, I've been to over 15 shows and own nearly every LP, but I'm very disappointed by Shaman, which could easily have been called Supernatural II.
This LP sounds and feels EXACTLY like Supernatural. Heck, even the video for "Game of Love" looks exactly like "Smooth". Supernatural was a great LP, and I'm very happy Carlos received the acolades he deserved from it, but I was hoping for a more Santana-like album this time around.
The only songs that remotely sound like classic Carlos are "Victory is Won," which was an instrumental mainstay of the last tour (you might remember it as the intro to "Smooth" at the 2000 Grammy Awards), and "America," which really highlight's his mastery of the guitar.
It's a shame Carlos seems to have gone pop.
One good thing about Shaman: It should spark sales for Santana's classic albums, because that's what you'll want to hear after listening to Shaman.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If Supernatural Won 9 Grammies, can this take 18?, October 22, 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Shaman (Audio CD)
I have loved Santana since 1969 (I lived near Woodstock, NY and heard the festival as it's sounds bounced and reverberated through the rolling hills of the Catskills....) My brother Gary bought the first Santana Album ... I would borrow it every chance I got ... and a 33 year love afair was born.
Then came 'Supernatural' - Carlos' Grammy shattering (9 Grammies - supposedly the most ever) multi-artist effort. And I was disappointed. I didn't hear enough of Carlos' upbeat, dynamic guitar playing. It sounded - subdued to me. I didn't like it.
Now comes 'Shamon'. Wow. Oh my. YEAH! Now THIS is Carlos! The incredible danceable 'Adouma' has you hop-dancing in your chair (close your eyes and begin swaying in rhythm with it - you will see what I mean.)
'America' - TNT in a bottle. Incredible lyrics (written by P.O.D.) with P.O.D. peforming with Santana (or really the other way around :-) Now THIS is awesome. You just never hear Carlos in a number like this - but you can tell his style from that of Marcos' (the lead guitarist for P.O.D.)
The Michelle Branch duet 'The Game of Love' is a lovely little swinging number (note to self: I really must investigate more of this incredible woman's music - so young but so talented. Fantastic!).
The duet on 'Feels Like Fire' with Dido is just plain wonderful. A nice, calming song that let's you unwind from some of the more energetic numbers.
And then ... there is 'Hoy Es Adios' - the collaboration with Alejandro Lerner, the Argentinian legendary song writer-performer-producer who has been performing in his native country for over 20 years. It is an experience like this song that really gives me pangs of sadness that I do not speak Spanish - I would love to know the lyrics of this wonderful song.
Now, we have had all sorts of famous people and different styles on this album. So you may ask "But is there any CLASSIC Santana Band-type music on this album?" Oh yes ... be prepared. I had some incredible flashbacks (no, they were NOT LSD induced) to some of Santana's earlier Albums - partucularly 'Caravanserai' and 'Borboletta'. For those fans of the classic Santana instrumental progressive-jazz-pop based music (ok, did I cover all the bases wih THAT description?), YOU may want to put on 'Victory Is Won' first.
When you hit Carlos' effort with SEAL, I DARE you not to have your foot (then your leg, then your head, then ... well, you get it) moving in rhythm. 'You Are My Kind' reminds me of Seal's first album, only with far superior guitar work.
Last, let's not forget the combination of - Carlos Santana and Placedo Domingo. This brings back memories of the duet between Carlos and Willie Nelson on 'Havannah Moon' (another album in the same vein as 'Supernatural' and 'Shamon' - many different and varied guests. But 'Havannah Moon' was not executed as well as either of the newer albums.) You have to ask yourself - "Can this REALLY work?" Answer - YES! Incredibly moving song - it actually has a touch of sadness to it but is still so romantic - wow! Carlos' guitar playing is haunting (especially the begining and the end of the song.) This song is the last on the album ... what a way to end this musical statement from Carlos Santana. The Grammies discovered him (finally) in 1999 ... I truly hope they are prepared for an encore.
Now, for those of you who like a challenge, there are actually two versions of this album. The US version has 'Since Supernatural' - which really does have a flavor of the musical flow in the 'Supernatural' album. Non-Us releases replace this song with 'Let Me Love You Tonight' - a song I really did not like as much as 'Since Supernatural' - although it does have some very nice riffs from Carlos. However in the end, 'Let Me Love You Tonight' sounds like something that should have been on the 1978 album 'Inner Secrets' instead of this album.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the great's.....and still making great music., November 4, 2002
By 
Robert Garfield (Hollywood, Florida USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Shaman (Audio CD)
I saw him first at Woodstock, the original, and have bought everything he's put out since, regardless of reviews and I'm happy to add this to my collection. He's put himself through changes in order to keep inspired and growing all his career with close to 30 band changes so trying new things is in his nature. Part of that is bringing in the guest artists and like any experiment, some things work better than others and that's as good as it gets in life and with albums. There's a few I love, a lot I like, and some I can take or leave but I don't think a straight Santana album would get produced today, when was the last album Clapton put out? Record companies are off in a new direction and Santana's format adding popular artists keeps him growing and gets his music made, at least for now. He's still got the desire and he's still putting it out. I don't care who's around him, I hear that guitar and for me it's Santana. It's like our President, whatever plane he's on is Air Force One :)
R. Garfield
Hollywood, FL
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why does it have to be a sellout?, December 5, 2002
This review is from: Shaman (Audio CD)
I disagree with Santana being pegged a sell out. Music evolves and Supernatural and this album are 2 examples of change. While I thoroughly enjoy the Santana of the past, the collaborations on this album show that Santana has changed style with the change in the times. "Feels Like Fire", "Why Don't You and I," and "Game of Love" definitely catch the ears of the pop-music goer. Personally, I like "Nothing at all" and "You are My Kind" because of the blend of R&B Hip Hop with the awesome background guitar. For those of us that enjoy cross-genre music, this album is just what you've been waiting for. If you want the old Santana, leave this one on the shelf. Although the non-collaborative tracks are reminiscent of the old Santana ("Victory Is One" is my fav), be warned that these tracks don't make up the whole cd. I think this CD is great mix of old and new!
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Carlos Santana--A Musical and Marketing Genius, April 21, 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: Shaman (Audio CD)
There is something on the CD for everyone--rock, pop, salsa, merengue, hip hop, and a track sung by the great tenor, Placido Domingo. Carlos' unbelievable guitar work is infused thoughout all of these.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Why Don't You and I?, September 4, 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: Shaman (Audio CD)
The version of the song with Alex Band from The Calling recently came out as a single and you can buy it here on Amazon. I think it's a better version. While Chad Kroeger is great, Band's voice is more suited to the song.
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Shaman
Shaman by Santana (Audio CD - 2002)
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