Carlos Santana Collapses Onstage Mid-Concert

·3 min read
Scott Legato/Getty
Scott Legato/Getty

On Tuesday night, legendary musician Carlos Santana collapsed onstage during a concert in Michigan.

The 74-year-old was about 20 minutes into his set at the Pine Knob Music Theatre in Clarkson, an outdoor venue on the edge of Detroit, when he passed out, prompting medical staffers to sprint onstage, cover him in a tarp, and wheel him off.

“Medical personnel on stage. Crowd asked to pray for him because of a ‘serious medical’ issue,” reported Roop Raj of local Fox 2 Detroit.

In a statement, a representative for Santana said he was “over-taken by heat exhaustion and dehydration” during the show and was “taken to the emergency department at McLaren Clarkson for observation and is doing well.” Video captured by a fan showed Santana waving to the crowd as he was being wheeled away.

In early February, Santana announced that he and members of his band had contracted COVID-19, prompting them to cancel a number of tour dates. And late last year, the 10-time Grammy winner and trailblazing Mexican maestro called off a number of dates in his Las Vegas residency due to his recovery from heart surgery.

“Just wanted to share with you some clarity with specificity what’s been going on with my physicality,” Santana said in an online video. “There’s been rumors flying around here and there about this and that. So, I’m here to just crystallize and make it clear. Last Saturday, I had an incident where I asked my wife, Cindy, to take me to the hospital because I had this thing happening in my chest.”

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Santana rose to prominence fusing rock and roll, blues, and Latin jazz, having been influenced by guitarists B.B. King and Jimi Hendrix, as well as bandleader Tito Puente. He began performing in the 1960s with his band Santana, whose breakout performance came at Woodstock—with a spirited rendition of the group’s song “Soul Sacrifice” featured in the celebrated documentary 1970 Woodstock. Santana’s 1970 sophomore album, Abraxas, featuring the singles “Black Magic Woman” and “Oye Cómo Va,” reached No. 1 on the U.S. album charts and is regarded as one of the greatest LPs ever.

Following a relatively dormant period, Santana returned to the top of the charts with his 1999 album Supernatural. The collaborative effort, including guest turns at the mic by Eric Clapton, Lauryn Hill, and Rob Thomas (who sang on “Smooth,” which sat at No. 1 on the Billboard charts for 12 consecutive weeks), sold 30 million copies and won nine Grammys, including Album of the Year. The previous year, he and his band were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

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