Happy Birthday to Carlos Santana who turns 70 years old today. The Mexican and American musician became a star at Woodstock in the 1960s with his band, Santana. They pioneered a fusion of rock and Latin American music that featured blues guitar alongside congas not generally heard in rock music. Born to a mariachi musician, he won eight of his 10 Grammy Awards for the 1999 LP Supernatural. WATCH the fantastic song, Smooth… (1947)
One of the surprises of the Woodstock festival, Santana’s set was legendary for its 11-minute instrumental. After getting them the career-changing gig, famed promoter Bill Graham gave the band some key advice to record the Willie Bobo song Evil Ways, which became a huge hit in 1969. Always moving forward, Santana has collaborated with artists across the spectrum of musical genres, but is perhaps best known for his other hits, Oye Como Va, Black Magic Woman, and Smooth.
Read about his musical self-determination and inner self-discovery in his articulate 2014 memoir, The Universal Tone: Bringing My Story to Light, in which he wrote, “Love is the light that is inside of all of us, everyone.” (2010 Photo by Larry Philpot -CC)
MORE Good News on this Day:
- The Methodist Church voted to allow women to become priests (1926)
- The world’s first-ever elected female head of government in the modern era was elected in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), Sirimavo Bandaranaike as Prime Minister (1960)
- Men first stepped on the moon during NASA’s Apollo 11 mission; Neil Armstrong first, because he was closest to the door and Buzz Aldrin second (1969)
- Viking 1 landed on Mars and its robot spacecraft transmitted the first color images from the planet’s surface, the culmination of an 11-month journey (1976)
- Israel’s Shimon Peres visited Jordan, the highest ranking Israeli official to do so (1994)
- Canada became the fourth country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage (2005)
And, on this day in 1985, treasure hunter Mel Fisher and his crew discovered part of the 1622 Spanish galleon wreck, the Nuestra Señora de Atocha, 40 miles off Key West, an estimated $450 million motherlode that included 40 tons of gold and silver, 114,000 Spanish silver coins known as “pieces of eight”, Colombian emeralds, gold and silver artifacts, and 1000 silver ingots. Mel struggled through decades of hard times treasure hunting in the Florida Keys with the motto Today’s the Day. Much of the bounty is on display in the nonprofit Mel Fisher Maritime Heritage Museum, but snce 2001, treasure hunters have been limited by the adoption of the UNESCO treaty, the Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage.
Also, on this day in 1976, gymnast Shun Fujimoto won Olympic gold medals for himself and his Japanese team after breaking his knee during the floor exercise routine. Performing with the injury, he scored 9.5 on the pommel horse and 9.7 on the rings, dismounting from the rings onto his broken knee from eight feet above ground and keeping his balance, landing on his feet. WATCH the video…