Santana will complete new reunion album this spring: ‘Like putting on a pair of old jeans’

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As the Santana III-era lineup gathered for the first time in nearly 45 years, Michael Shrieve says everything fell into place with remarkable ease.

“It’s beautiful,” he tells Hit Channel. “It’s like putting on a pair of old jeans.”

Neal Schon, then the band’s wunderkind second guitarist, sparked this unlikely reunion through a series of conversations with mentor Carlos Santana. The new album, appropriately titled Santana IV, will bring the pair together again with Michael Carabello, Gregg Rolie and Michael Shrieve. The late David Brown is being replaced by 1990s-era Santana band member Benny Rietveld on bass.

As smoothly as it started, however, that initial work on the loose, improvisational Santana IV was followed by a series of solo projects. Carlos Santana released the solo project Corazon,, while Neal Schon worked to complete his own solo album, to be titled Vortex. Gregg Rolie, meanwhile, returned for a series of shows with Ringo Starr.

The spring finds them refocusing on Santana IV again, Shrieve says.

“We are recording together for the first time since the early ‘70s,” he says. “We have recorded nine tracks and we are getting together in April for a couple of weeks and we will be able to finish that up as well. I think that it sounds great.”

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