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Carlos Santana talks techCNET's Kara Tsuboi interviews rock legend Carlos Santana about how technology may erode musical creativity, why he agrees with Metallica's view on copyright protection, and the gadget he can't live without.
[ Music ] ^M00:00:05 >> I'm Kara Tsuboi, CNET.com, and I'm joined by rock legend, Carlos Santana. Thank you so much for joining us. Really quickly, tell me how technology has shaped the way that you make music, and the way that you record music these days. >> Well, my son asked me, which is very unusual that my son would ask me a question because, you know people want to do things their own way -- but he asked me one time, he said, "What did you have in the '60s that we don't have now? And what do we have now that you didn't have in the '60s?" >> Mm-hmm. >> So what people have now is computers that you can change the tempo and keep the same key. You have a lot of plumber pretending they're guitar players or musicians because they really don't know anything about music. But because of technology, you're able to lip sync. You're able to do all kinds of things and kind of fake your way through. What we have in the '60s that people don't have today is we used more imagination than let a computer do it for us. You know, I think that when they ask Picasso before he died in '73, "What do you think of computers?" And he said, "I can't use them because they only give you facts." We artists, we go beyond time and space, and beyond impossibles and beyond facts. Computers, they do serve a purpose, but what technology to me is -- I learned to embrace more from the point of what it is, a tool to bring better communication, and to empower people to have self worth. >> As far as a means of communication, what would you say some of the positives, and of course, negatives are of using the Internet as a means of distribution for your music, or for any artist's music? >> Well there's no more Tower Records, you know, and there's very few stores who actually supply music. I'm pretty much with Metallica. I think that to a certain extent, certain things be free, but when it comes to a point where if I want to fly to Italy, unless you're gonna pay for the airlines, and you gonna pay for the hotels, then you're fooling yourself to think that music should be free, you know? When you can -- when I can go to the supermarket and get milk and pay my rent and pay the taxes for free, then we'll have a talk about for free. Otherwise, you know, stop being so naive and pretending that you -- that, you know, there's a certain price that we pay for being humans in this. And I'm okay with that, you know? I think that certain things should be shared, and certain things we shouldn't be punished for. I think that anyone who convinces themself that music should be free, I think that you should really look at yourself in the mirror and ask yourself when is the last time you went to the store and got eggs for free and water for free? >> Really quickly, what are some of your favorite gadgets that you can't live without? >> The iPhone. You know, I went from smoke signals, like an Apache, you know communicating with smoke signals and mirrors to the iPhone. I mean I just jumped on it last year and all of a sudden, I'm -- I'm able to collect -- I collect so much music from Jimmy Hendrix and Miles Davis, and I get to put it on computer now, and iPods, and so I'm sorry to say, I have become a computer geek. >> Well, you're still a rock legend at heart. Thank you so much -- >> Thank you so much. >> -- Carlos Santana. I'm Kara Tsuboi, CNET.com. >> Peace. Hi. I'm Carlos Santana, and you're watching CNET TV. Stay in your heart and peace. ^M00:03:28 [ Music ]