It was the song of the summer in 1999. No, make that the song of the year in 1999. “Smooth” was also the song that introduced Carlos Santana to a whole new generation of music lovers.
Released as the first single from Santana’s album Supernatural, “Smooth” was originally written by composer Itaal Shur as “Room 17.” Rob Thomas of Matchbox Twenty rewrote the lyrics with George Michael in mind as the singer. But when Carlos Santana heard the demo, he decided Thomas should be the one to record it for the album. The rest is chart-topping history.
“Smooth” spent 12 consecutive weeks at number one on the Billboard Hot 100, beginning on October 23, 1999. The track was in the top ten for a total of 30 weeks. It remains the biggest hit of Carlos Santana’s recording career, which stretches back to 1969.
The video begins with shots of a city street on a sweltering summer day. Carlos Santana’s band assembles and begins to play. The neighborhood comes alive and a hot Latin dance party ensues. It’s the kind of celebration we’re missing right now.