There are 384 homes in Lakeshore Gardens occupied with fascinating people. We will interview our friends and post their stories on this website. Enjoy!
As a professional percussionist, Walter Santos has played with a “Who’s Who” in the world of modern jazz and rock music. But it is less important who he plays with these days, because now he plays for the only “who” that matters: Jesus Christ.
Born in New York City, Walter Santos learned percussion in the neighborhoods of that city. He grew up during a time (in the late 1950s) when “Doo-Wop” became particularly popular. Walter got his first break in the music business by playing in Carnegie Hall on the same bill as the legendary jazz group “The Jazz Crusaders.” That introduction eventually opened doors for him to play with other renowned jazz musicians of the time, including Jimmy Smith, Stanley Turrentine, and Les McCann.
Later, his talents as a percussionist allowed him to play along with such famous bands as Charlie Daniels, Moby Grape, The Marshall Tucker Band, The Outlaws, and George Benson.
One of Walter’s favorite musicians was teenage idol Dion, with whom Walter later became a close friend. While experiencing the “fast life” of a professional musician, Walter developed a strong addiction to drugs. By God’s intervention, Dion introduced him to the life changer: Jesus Christ. Walter’s experience with God eventually led him to Calvary Ranch, a drug and alcohol rehabilitation facility in San Diego.
After years of being freed from drugs Walter has himself decided to reach out to people who themselves are struggling with substance abuse. Besides running his own ministry (Santos Ministries), he provides musical outlets – properly named “Street Corner Symphonies” – to churches, civic groups, and various organizations. He also just completed a gospel album called “Deep and Rich,” which features arrangements of many classic hymns.