Santana digs Las Vegas’ energy, intends to stay

Carlos Santana says that no matter how often he plays Las Vegas, he’s “staying here for keeps” as a Nevada resident.

The 66-year-old guitar legend says his future at the House of Blues at Mandalay Bay isn’t “crystalized” after this month’s batch of eight shows running through Feb. 1. He hopes to be back in November.

“I very much like growing and glowing at the House of the Blues,” he says. “I like to use that facility not only as a home, but as a laboratory to experiment with new things.”

Newlyweds Santana and drummer Cindy Blackman moved to Las Vegas when he became a recurring headliner at the Hard Rock Hotel and then, in May 2012, the House of Blues.

Last summer, the real estate website Redfin reported that Santana put his Summerlin home on the market for $3.5 million and bought a new house in the same neighborhood for $6 million.

“I love the energy here, the energy on the Strip and outside the Strip. There’s a lot of vitality in here,” he says.

Though he was synonymous with psychedelic San Francisco, California turned into “a lot of quagmire and a lot of excuses. People keep closing schools every year and opening more prisons.”

In Las Vegas he has found “a lot of people who are thirsty for righteousness.

“I love meeting owners of the big enterprises here. The more I meet them, the more I’m encouraged there’s a lot of people with deep pockets and big hearts.”

Contact reporter Mike Weatherford at or 702-383-0288.