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SANTANA WANTS TO FOLLOW DAVIS OUT ARISTA’S DOOR
Hall Of Fame Guitarist Still Under Contract, Exit May Be Anything But "Smooth"

Carlos Santana is willing to leave Arista, the label responsible for his unprecedented comeback, and follow founder clive davis',390,400);">clive davis',390,400);">Clive Davis "wherever he goes," the guitarist said Thursday night in Madrid, reports Billboard Bulletin.

However, leaving the label may be a problem for the 30-year music industry veteran. "I am under contract with BMG/Arista," he said. "I think we'll know the answer to this in three or four weeks."

Santana was signed to the label by Davis—who executive produced his mega-selling, Grammy-winning "Supernatural" release—and is currently in contract renegotiations with BMG. The Hall of Famer began a 22-date European tour in Madrid yesterday.

Fellow Hall of Famer Davis is leaving Arista when his contract expires June 30. Several other artists, including Patti Smith, and executives have said they will leave with him.

Wondererers are wondering whether Santana's public statement is merely a contract ploy, and if so, why bother? After the phenomenal success of "Supernatural," his handlers know the Hall of Famer's deal will be sweetened. That comes with the territory. Could it be that Clive, in trying to hammer out a deal with BMG, is flexing his muscles after being told there's no way he's bringing any Arista superstars along with him? Oye como va. This one could get interesting.

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