For the week ending Nov. 5, 1977, the highest ranking “new entry” to the Billboard Top LPs and Tape chart came from Carlos Santana at #41. It was the double album called Moonflower.
Moonflower featured a mix of new studio tracks and live recordings from concert performances earlier in the year (on the tour to support the Festival album released in January). Among the live songs were “Europa (Earth’s Cry Heaven’s Smile),” “Soul Sacrifice” and “Black Magic Woman/Gypsy Queen.”
The new music continued with the strong Latin rhythms heard on Festival and 1976’s Amigos, after Santana had spent four years exploring jazz fusion. His cover version of the Zombies’ “She’s Not There” cracked the Top 40 singles chart in the US. It was Santana’s first Top 40 airplay since 1972’s “No One to Depend On.”
Keyboardist Tom Coster wrote the beautiful, instrumental title track, “Flor d’Luna (Moonflower),” but my favorite song is “Transcendance” (the French word for “transcendence” and a play on its sway) written by Carlos Santana. The song starts off wonderfully slow with Greg Walker’s tender vocals and David Margen’s steady bass line, and then it kicks into high gear at about 2:45.