The Game of Love (Santana and Michelle Branch song)

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"The Game of Love"
Single by Santana featuring Michelle Branch
from the album Shaman and Hotel Paper (international version)
B-side "Come to My World", "Curacion"
Released September 17, 2002
Format CD, 7"
Genre Pop, pop rock, adult contemporary
Length 4:18
Label Arista
Writer(s) Gregg Alexander, Rick Nowels
Producer(s) Clive Davis, Carlos Santana
Santana singles chronology
"Maria Maria"
"The Game of Love"
"Nothing at All"
Michelle Branch singles chronology
"All You Wanted"
"The Game of Love"
"Goodbye to You"

"The Game of Love" is a song performed by Santana from the album Shaman by Santana. The vocal performance on the song is by Michelle Branch. It was composed by Gregg Alexander and Rick Nowels. The song was launched as single in 2002, and won a Grammy Award for "Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals", as well as peaking at #5 in on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart.[citation needed]


The track had originally been recorded with a male vocalist but producer Clive Davis felt a female voice would maximize the song's appeal and a recording of Santana performing "The Game of Love" with Tina Turner as vocalist was completed. When Turner declined to participate in making a video for the track Davis first recruited Macy Gray to cut a replacement vocal: the version with Gray not being deemed satisfactory Michelle Branch was then invited to be the track's vocalist [1] with Branch's rhythm guitar playing also added to the track. Branch would recall: "It was the first time for me to sing somebody else's song. Usually I'm like: 'Oh I want it this way' and I'm in charge...I didn't meet [ Carlos Santana at the recording session], I didn't know what was going on...It felt to me like wow it seems like there's so much at stake, I'm going to go in there and just sing my heart out and just cross my fingers." [2]

The Tina Turner version of "The Game of Love" was issued on the 2007 retrospective Ultimate Santana, Carlos Santana then stating: "There's only one Tina Turner...No one can hit a note like Tina Turner" - I love Michelle [Branch] and she did a great interpretation of it. It's just that with all honor and respect to Michelle, there's the girl and there's the woman, and Michelle is unfolding into a woman...but it takes time to go from a girl into a woman." [3]

Music video[edit]

The music video depicts Santana and Branch in an alley with couples around them, each expressing their love for one another. The director was Paul Fedor and the video was filmed in the Pilsen neighborhood of Chicago.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "The Game of Love" [radio mix] – Santana, Michelle Branch
  2. "Come to My World" – Santana
  3. "Curacion" (Sunlight on Water) – Santana
  4. "The Game of Love" [multimedia track] – Santana, Michelle Branch


Chart (2002-03) Peak
Australia (ARIA)[4] 21
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[4] 51
Belgium (Ultratip Flanders)[5] 2
Belgium (Ultratip Wallonia)[6] 5
Canada (Nielsen SoundScan)[citation needed] 4
Germany (Official German Charts)[7] 46
Hungary (Rádiós Top 40)[8] 8
Ireland (IRMA)[citation needed] 19
Italy (FIMI)[4] 11
Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[4] 23
New Zealand (RIANZ)[4] 7
Norway (VG-lista)[4] 17
Poland (Polish Singles Chart)[9] 1
Romania (Romanian Top 100)[10] 7
Spain (AFYVE)[11] 6
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[4] 54
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[4] 20
United Kingdom (The Official Charts Company)[citation needed] 16
U.S. Billboard Hot 100[citation needed] 5
U.S. Billboard Adult Contemporary[citation needed] 1
U.S. Billboard Adult Top 40[citation needed] 1
U.S. Billboard Mainstream Top 40[12] 5


  1. ^
  2. ^ The Hour 20 November 2002 p.A2
  3. ^ Victoria Advocate 3 August 2007 p. m3
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h Retrieved October 16, 2012
  5. ^ " – Santana feat. Michelle Branch – The Game of Love" (in Dutch). Ultratip.
  6. ^ " – Santana feat. Michelle Branch – The Game of Love" (in French). Ultratip.
  7. ^ " – Santana feat. Michelle Branch Single-Chartverfolgung" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH.
  8. ^ "Archívum – Slágerlisták – MAHASZ" (in Hungarian). Rádiós Top 40 játszási lista. Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége. Retrieved 2010-12-08.
  9. ^ "Nielsen Music Control". Archived from the original on 2008-05-08. 
  10. ^ Romanian peak at the Wayback Machine (archived December 28, 2004)
  11. ^ Salaverri, Fernando (September 2005). Sólo éxitos: año a año, 1959–2002 (1st ed.). Spain: Fundación Autor-SGAE. ISBN 84-8048-639-2. 
  12. ^ "Michelle Branch Album & Song Chart History - Pop Songs". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved June 16, 2011. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
"Landslide" by Dixie Chicks
"Beautiful" by Christina Aguilera
Billboard Adult Contemporary number-one single
April 5–12, 2003 (first run)
May 24–31, 2003 (second run)
Succeeded by
"Beautiful" by Christina Aguilera
"Drift Away" by Uncle Kracker