Carlos Santana has for a long while been one of my favourite guitarists. He has that special something that seems to transcend the realms of normal music, and take it to an altogether higher plane. In my quest to learn more about Carlos, I discovered one of his influences, that maybe helped put the magic in his playing.
Gabor Szabo was a Hungarian born guitarist and Carlos was a big fan:
“We used to fool around with ‘Gypsy Queen” because I loved Gabor Szabo so much. I used to see Gabor play a lot in the Bay area. He’d seem to lock himself into a certain position and just put everyone in a spell. He was the guitar player who took me out of B.B. King — otherwise I’d still be with those Chicago and Texas blues cats. ‘Gypsy Queen’ was our way of doing his music.”
I managed to get a copy of The Sorcerer a while back, and really enjoy Mr Szabo’s approach to the guitar, weaving circular, hypnotic patterns, which are deeply infectious and contagious. The Sorcerer was recorded live at the Jazz Workshop, Boston in 1967.
Unfortunately I never got a chance to see him live, but his recordings live on, and will no doubt influence future generations of players. Enjoy.