Grammy Report #10: Santana Perform, Win Album Of TheYear

Latin-rock band's Supernatural generates nine Grammys, including award for "Smooth."

Carlos Santana looked like the coolest guy in the building as he and Rob Thomas of Matchbox 20 played their Grammy-winning hit "Smooth" in the closing moments of the 42nd Annual Grammy Awards.

The performance was followed by Santana's namesake band winning the Album of the Year award for Supernatural, the most successful LP of the group's 30-year history. It was the disc's eighth win of the evening. With a songwriting award for the track "Smooth," the album generated nine wins in all - beating pop star Michael Jackson's eight trophies in 1983 for the album Thriller.

Santana, wearing shades and a black fedora, smiled frequently and looked unaffected by anything around him as he blazed through the song's incendiary solos. At one point, he knelt down and bounced slightly as he sped through the rapid-fire notes of the final solo.

Thomas looked intense, almost angry, as he recited the

song's romantic lyrics. He wore a black T-shirt and

leather pants, a recurrent fashion statement

throughout the night. Santana and Thomas then ended

what appeared to be a labor of love by kissing at

song's end.

Clive Davis, the Arista chairman who co-produced

Supernatural, spread the love in his remarks.

"This has so much more significance than just the

album of the year," said a smiling Davis, dressed

conservatively in a black and gray tuxedo. "You're an

inspiration to every young musician on the planet."

Santana thanked his family and acknowledged one of his

inspirations, jazz saxophonist John Coltrane, as he

left the podium.

Supernatural is the #1 album on the

Billboard 200 albums chart this week. The disc

has sold more than 6 million copies.

Bob Dylan and Lauryn Hill presented the award, the

evening's final trophy. Hill, dressed in green,

fidgeted as she stood next to folk hero Dylan, who

wore navy blue.

Nearly a half-hour earlier, piano-rock veteran Elton

John got his due, receiving the Grammy Legend Award.

Fellow piano man Billy Joel introduced him, saying

that John served as an inspiration as the two became

successful in the 1970s.

John then performed a version of his song

"Philadelphia Freedom" (

href="http://www.sonicnet.com/artists/clip.cgi?track=%7Eoo-XXXXXX%2F0094731_0111_00_0002.ra">RealAudio

excerpt). He was joined by the

Backstreet Boys, who sang passionate harmony vocals.

John, wearing purple-tinted sunglasses, looked

laid-back as he rendered the lyrics of songwriting

partner Bernie Taupin. He wore a black-sequined

jacket, another fashion favorite for the event, and

received a standing ovation when finished.