The recently reported cover of John Lennon‘s “Imagine” that Carlos Santana recorded with his wife, Santana drummer Cindy Blackman Santana, debuted today in conjunction with the newly launched SongAid campaign, which benefits the WhyHunger charity’s Rapid Response Fund.
The rocking, soulful version of “Imagine,” featuring Cindy on lead vocals and drums and Carlos delivering fiery guitar riffs, is included on a SongAid playlist available now digitally and via various streaming music services. Each time someone listens to or purchases any of those tunes, the proceeds will be donated to the WhyHunger fund.
In addition, an official video for the Santanas’ “Imagine” cover premiered today on RollingStone.com. The clip features footage of Cindy singing the tune from her and Carlos’ residence in Hawaii — where the couple has been self-isolating since March because of the COVID-19 pandemic — as well as performance footage of her and her husband.
The track also will be featured on Cindy’s forthcoming solo album, Give the Drummer Some, which is due out in September.
Cindy tells Rolling Stone that she decided to record “Imagine” while working on original songs with producer/drummer Narada Michael Walden, who recently joined Journey. Cindy says Narada asked her, “If you were going to cover a song, any song, what song would it be?” and “Imagine” was her choice.
Cindy also reveals that Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono, gave her “thumbs up of approval” to the cover after she heard it.
“She loved it, so we’re really honored,” Cindy notes.
As for the decision to take part in the WhyHunger campaign, Cindy says that she and Carlos “are very impressed because their mission statement is stated in their title: What they want to do is feed people.”
Visit SongAid.com to find out more about the initiative.
By Matt Friedlander
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