Bill Ortiz has been a member of Carlos Santana's touring band since 2000, landing the gig after performing on the Santana's 1999 smash single Smooth from the multi-Grammy-winning, 30-million selling smash CD, Supernatural. Ortiz also appears on the Grammy-winning single The Game of Love from Santana's 2002 release, Shaman. Carlos Santana states, "Bill articulates the beautiful language of jazz without loosing the purity and innocence of a child. It's a wonderful experience to share music every night with him."
From the sensual and scintillating jazzy opener, AyeJaye, to the rollicking Reggae infused Judgment Day, to the soulful and searing sexiness of Slip Into This and Ease My Mind, each track is, not only, a brilliant showcase of Bill's prodigal trumpet playing, but also a masterwork confirming this San Francisco musician as a compositional genius.
Bill states, "I consider myself a jazz musician, but I'm not a purist at all, as my musical upbringing contains a wide variety of musical styles, including Latin, African, and Rhythm and Blues/Soul and Blues. My musical voice in From Where I Stand reflects all of those elements of who I am as a musician and a person. Music is not only what I do, music is who I am."
Ortiz took up the trumpet at age 10 and by his teen years, he was first chair trumpet in the San Francisco All-City Band. During his college years, Bill began exploring electronic music and gained his first experience in Latin music, leading him to perform and record with Orchestra Batachanga, Pete Escovedo, and John Santos' Machete Ensemble. Over two and a half decades, Bill's performing and recording credits include work with such diverse and dynamic artists as Destiny's Child, Taj Mahal, Tito Puente, Tony Toni Toné, Patty Austin, Michelle Branch, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, Lauryn Hill, Quincy Jones, Beyonce' Knowles, John McLaughlin, Todd Rundgren, Arturo Sandoval, and Boz Scaggs, to name just a few.
Bill Ortiz is now performing with Santana at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas through to June 15, 2009. Santana, with Bill Ortiz, will tour Europe from June 27 to July 27, 2009, and return to the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas from August 24 to September 13, 2009.