Review: Carlos Santana and Steve Miller Band

SantanaLast Friday night, two of the world’s greatest blues-rock bands of all time, Santana and the Steve Miller Band teamed up and brought their co-headline tour all the way from America to Adelaide’s Entertainment Centre.

Kicking off the night, the Steve Miller Band entered the stage full of energy and eager to put on a great show for their Adelaide fans. With a career in music continuing for over 40 years, including 30 million records sales, the band did not fail to deliver.

The stage was creatively decorated with an array of fabricated guitars set in front of the back wall which created a 3D effect. The band, made up of some of the original line-up from the 1960s and some newer faces, happily interacted with the audience as though the room (almost filled to capacity) full of fans was an intimate show. They had us clapping and singing along to some all time favourites, Kow Kow, Serenade from the stars, Gangster of love, The Window, Fly like an eagle, Space cowboy and Keep on rocking me baby.

Steve Miller (guitarist, vocals), who will be celebrating his 70th birthday in October this year, still boasts a youthful charm. He played a solo acoustic set which included Gangster of Love. Miller claims to have written the song at the age of 13 – yet he still managed to perform the hit full of energy and charisma. He even had a bit of a laugh at himself for having written certain lines such as “And I said yes sir brother sheriff, and that’s your wife on the back of my horse” at such a young age.

The Steve Miller Band left the stage leaving the crowd in a frenzy – clapping, whistling, some brought to their feet, screaming, stomping and begging for more.  They returned to the stage with their encore hit song, The Joker, leaving the crowd satisfied and hyped up for the next performance.

Carlos Santana, declared number 15 on The Rolling Stone’s list of “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time” took to the stage enchanting us with his combination of Latin rock, blues, soul and jazz melodies. The world has enjoyed the sounds of Carlos Santana for over four decades – not stopping there.  He has sold more than 90 million records and reached over 100 million fans worldwide.

Santana’s musical ensemble is made up of instrumentalists playing drums and percussion, trumpets, trombones, tambourines, maracas, bongos and most importantly, the guitar. My favourite touch to the band was the tiger print bongo set reflecting the exotic feel to Santana’s soulful sound. As a guitarist myself, I particularly enjoyed hearing the volume crank as Santana shredded the strings and flattened the wah-wah pedals.

Although majority of the crowd were seniors, they mirrored Santana’s (aged 65) lively energy and were brought to their feet within minutes – dancing along, shimmying and shaking hips. Some personal favourites were played which had me swaying along in my seat, Black magic woman and Maria, Maria just to name a couple.

This performance showed me that you don’t have to be young to have fun. The two legendary bands are living proof that good music is timeless and age abilities are endless.

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