inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #51 of 154: Ed Ward (captward) Sat 17 Nov 07 08:51
    
Sorry, I have to side with <rik> here. Both the guitar sound that
Hendrix got with the Experience and the other two guys in the band were
clearly influenced by the British scene at the time. Now yeah, this
was the result of Brits trying to imitate American blues musicians, but
it was also the sound of them failing and creating something new out
of it (cf. the Rolling Stones). So the idea -- whoever's it was -- of
"hey, what would it sound like if we had an open-minded black American
guitarist?" was the key to his success. I always "heard" the Experience
as a British band. 

Also gotta take issue with:

>>Those guys still plugging away on the "Chitlin' Circuit" never
expanded their sound into such cross-over appeal.

Maybe not in the same way that Hendrix did, but a lot of them were
older. B.B. King, Bobby "Blue" Bland, Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, Buddy
Guy, Junior Wells, Magic Sam, Bobby Rush, and a lot of other blues
musicians who'd been more or less retired by that circuit by the aging
of their fans and the changing tastes of young blacks were definitely
rescued by the white rock audience, and black artists who were willing
to bend with the times -- you mention Sly, but also George Clinton and
Stevie Wonder -- crossed over quite nicely, usually without sacrificing
their core audience. 
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #52 of 154: Steven Roby (jimijames) Sat 17 Nov 07 09:53
    
>>How do you address the element of Jimi's and the era's drug use when
teaching college kids?

Occasionally questions come up like,"Was he a drug addict from day
one?" or myths like, "I heard he used to put acid in his headband at
the beginning of a concert." I then try to explain how the times were
less sober than today, and how so many rumors aren't true.
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #53 of 154: Steven Roby (jimijames) Sat 17 Nov 07 10:24
    
>>Those guys still plugging away on the "Chitlin' Circuit" never
expanded their sound into such cross-over appeal.

I agree with <captward> here. Some of them never wanted to expand
their sound, and were quite happy and talented with what the played.

>>Both the guitar sound that
Hendrix got with the Experience and the other two guys in the band
were clearly influenced by the British scene at the time.

Here are a few comments that British reporter Chris Welch made about
the scene at that time:

"Obviously people like Clapton and Jimi Hendrix were very special
talents because they were brilliant musicians. They weren’t just pop
stars, although being in the 60’s everybody was presented as a chart
starter, shock people on TV, glamorous costumes and crazy stage act,
but at the root, he was a combination of things. He was a flirt as well
as being a great blues guitar player, and a very good singer. In fact
he had a very magical musical voice, It wasn’t a great range but he had
this tremendous feeling for blues, and I thought he was an excellent
singer.

 Jimi was very modest, he was quite shy about trumpeting his own
talents. And that was something that caused him quite a few problems,
and ‘cause he went along with that plan to project him as a kind of
wild man at heart, which was Chas Chandler’s master plan to get
publicity.  He enjoyed that first, but it became a bit of a burden
later, like a mill stone around the neck. Every time you go on stage
you’ve got to be Jimi Hendrix, the public’s vision of Hendrix. And , he
just couldn’t live with that. It would be rather like David Bowie
being Ziggy Stardust today. You just can’t do it in the thirty odd
years or whatever. And Jimi didn’t want to be the wild man part for
more than six months. After that the novelty had worn off I think. And
that caused him many problems because he had to find a new way.

 I think his problem was that if he’d survived another few years he
would have been performing during he era when rock music took off as
kind of spectacle, and technically it was improved as well. If you can
imagine Hendrix playing today with the kind of lighting and stage
effects that every band takes for granted now, and not to mention the 
technical advances in recording, and the use of sound, Midi, digital
recording, computerization. All of this would have helped Jimi Hendrix
enormously to expand as a great musician, and not to be a kind of
passing pop freak show."
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #54 of 154: "The Best for Your Health!" (rik) Sat 17 Nov 07 10:50
    
"He enjoyed that first, but it became a bit of a burden
 later, like a mill stone around the neck. Every time you go on stage
 you�ve got to be Jimi Hendrix, the public�s vision of Hendrix."

According to Nick Gravenites, Mike Bloomfield went through the same hell.
Every time he signed a contract to play, it was like saying, "I, Michael
Bloomfield, agree to be inspired,  at 9PM on Friday....."

An interesting chitlin circuit blowback was when Ernie Isley would up doing
his best to imitate Hendrix late in the Isley Brothers career.   White
Strat, headband, overdrive...  "Who's That Lady", indeed.

And a good example of west coast fusion would be the very integrated Oakland
soul band, with a kick-ass rhythm section that was like Memphis on rocket
fuel, and a very overdriven British sounding lead guitar.  But way more
disciplined than Jimi.   Think of "What is Hip".
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #55 of 154: Scott MacFarlane (s-macfarlane) Sat 17 Nov 07 10:54
    
When Jimi went to London, he took that "British Invasion" sound and
elevated it to a new level. The Jimi Hendrix Experience didn't sound
like Cream; Hendrix didn't sound like the original Fleetwood Mac; he
didn't sound like Savoy Brown, Procol Harem, Jethro Tull, Pink Floyd,
Traffic, Humble Pie, or the Moody Blues who were all hitting when Jimi
broke through from 1967 to 1970.  

Jimi had more soul and R&B influence to his Bluesy base, and with all
the innovative distortions and backfeeding, he sounded like, well, like
Jimi Hendrix. When I hear Noel Redding's song on Axis: Bold As Love,
"She's so fine, so very very fine" I cringe.  Frankly, Jimi was 90%
plus of the Experience sound and he could have been backed up by any
number of bassists and drummers. 

Jimi never had a black fan base, as shown in Steve's telling anecdote
about him returning to Garfield H.S. in Seattle where most of the black
kids there had never heard of him. War, Tower of Power, Carlos
Santana, Sly & the Family Stone, and Love, were different in one key
way from those Motown successes such as Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder,
Smokie, the Supremes, or the roots Blues artists mentioned.  These West
Coast acts weren't built off of, or expanded from a base of
African-American listeners(or in the case of Santana, a Hispanic base).
These groups were mainstream rock successes from the get-go. 

The multi-culturally influenced sound of psychedelic rock, including
the British Invasion, set the stage for a broader appreciation of those
roots artists, and to a lesser extent the crossover acceptance of the
Motown musicians.  I first saw Stevie Wonder in 1972 as an opening act
for the Rolling Stones. His biggest crossover successes came in the
mid-70s with "Talking Book" and "InnerVisions". Indeed, he never lost
his core base of listeners when his music crossed over, but his path to
success was quite different than Jimi's and those other West Coast
groups.   
  
I know there is a book by Charles Cross that closely examines Jimi's
early life in Seattle.  If the question is that London was more
important to Jimi's success than Seattle, then there is no argument. As
for the most prominent musical imprint on his sound, I argue that
those years from 1962 to 1966 in the United States (away from Seattle)
touring and experimenting on his own were what established the major
base of his sound. As I said, London gave him a last layering. And,
when he went to London at first, he traveled light. So, of course, he
plugged into the amps the Brits were using.  

However, if it's a question of which place was more influential on
Jimi's "individuality" and his striving to be unique as an artist, I
still look at Seattle as being very influential.  Even if Seattle had a
population of about 500,000 in the 1950's and there was a population
of 6% blacks, Jimi was part of a minority base of 30,000 people who
were tied to broader African-American cultural influence. He was also
forced in Seattle to be more multi-cultural and adaptable than he would
have been elsewhere.  It's irrelevant whether he liked the city or
wanted to go back, Jimi was always a black American from the Pacific
Northwest. The English always painted him as an outside anomaly, which,
of course, he was for them.  I think Jimi's Seattle-derived sense of
individuality helped sustain him there and helped him find a way to
carve his own niche as a star. 
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #56 of 154: Ed Ward (captward) Sat 17 Nov 07 11:02
    
>>Frankly, Jimi was 90% plus of the Experience sound and he could have
been backed up by any number of bassists and drummers. 

I can't speak to bassists, but Mitch Mitchell was a dynamo, and was
compared to Elvin Jones even back then. He never came close when he
wasn't working with Hendrix, either. 

And although I don't know if you're making the usual mistake of
"Motown = Soul Music," Motown is a very bad example of music for a
purely black audience or a chitlin' circuit tour, because they crossed
over from practically day one, every one of them. What Stevie Wonder
did, by defying the Motown machine, was figure out a way to get not
only on the AM Top 40 pop stations, but the "underground" FM stations,
too. 
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #57 of 154: Scott MacFarlane (s-macfarlane) Sat 17 Nov 07 11:03
    
<<not to be a kind of passing pop freak show.

Steve, among Jimi's peers especially, and among those fans who were
more immersive, don't you think that his stature was always more
substantive than this?
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #58 of 154: "The Best for Your Health!" (rik) Sat 17 Nov 07 11:44
    
" As for the most prominent musical imprint on his sound, I argue that
 those years from 1962 to 1966 in the United States (away from Seattle)
 touring and experimenting on his own were what established the major base
 of his sound."

Well, yeah.  That's when he learned is trade.  But the music he was playing
was essentially the same as what other black guitarists were playing.   You
can easily hear the Curtis Mayfield stuff in his later work when he does his
"Little Wing" ballad style.   But I don't know where, in the chittlin
cirsuit playing, you'd hear any of the overdriven, guitar-as-a-horn-section,
playing that became one of the hallmarks of his style.



"As I said, London gave him a last layering. And,
 when he went to London at first, he traveled light. So, of course, he
 plugged into the amps the Brits were using."

It wasn't just the amps.  It's the way the brits were using them.  Listen to
The Who's "I Can See For Miles", or even cruder, Dave Davies' riff on "You
Really Got Me".   This is where the empire struck back, taking American
music and moving it to another place.   Hendrix picked it up instantly and
raised them in shomanship.   He took the British overdriven style and showed
them a thing or two about how to do it with the guitar behind his back.
THAT was chittlin circuit.
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #59 of 154: Scott MacFarlane (s-macfarlane) Sat 17 Nov 07 11:52
    
<<Motown is a very bad example of music for a purely black audience>>

Yes, and Motown is also a shining example of a changing America in the
'60s where more cultural diversity was being embraced.  The Motown
success also underscores just how fluid the music scene in the late
Sixties had become. The Motown scene, unlike those California fusion
groups I mentioned, did also have a strong black American core of fans
and, from the early '60s branched out from this base.  

And, of course, plenty of roots musicians and "Chitlin' Circuit"
headliners were comfortable in continuing to play what they were
successful with.  Jimi, however, was always looking to push the
envelope.  I think Steve makes a great point that, even after Jimi's
phenomenal success via London, he was still looking to push new
frontiers of musical expression for himself. IMHO, this is part of that
spirit of rugged individualism--a trait of the West--that Jimi clearly
possessed.  Whether as a back-up to the R&B stars in the South or
feeling straight-jacketed by his Experience managers, Jimi wanted more.
 Heck, maybe it wasn't Seattle/West Coast,the "Chitlin' Circuit", NYC
or London that most influenced Jimi. Maybe it was the Army and the
drive to: "Be All That You Can Be." 

[apologies]   
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #60 of 154: Scott MacFarlane (s-macfarlane) Sat 17 Nov 07 11:58
    
Good clarification, Rik.  

Maybe if Jimi hadn't died, instead of the Jazz fusion angle, he would
have gone back to Sweden to raise his kid.  Do you think he might have
revolutionized the nyckelharpa?  :=)
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #61 of 154: John Ross (johnross) Sat 17 Nov 07 14:18
    
Scott, are you familiar with Paul de Barros' history of the Black jazz scene
in Seattle, "Jackson Street After Hours?" de Barros documents the very
active jazz and R&B scene that evolved in Seattle through the 1940s and 50s.
He argues that "What Hendrix did derive from his local background was simple
blues discipline and form, for which there were lots of able role models on
Jackson Street...Ulitmately, that simple foundation was as important for
Hendrix's development as the experiemental sounds he later heard in New York
and London." And he quotes local jazz icon Floyd Standifer: "Seattle serves
a unqie purpose. It's one of the lovliest incubators you'll ever run into.
Seattle was always a place to get it together, or come off the road and
reassess yourself. But you can't stay here, if you're going to make it big.
You don't have the numbers, first of all. You don't have the market value."
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #62 of 154: Scott MacFarlane (s-macfarlane) Sat 17 Nov 07 15:13
    
Good stuff, John.  Quincy Jones was a Seattle product and Ray Charles
cut his teeth on the Jackson Street scene.

Steve, you like to imagine what might have become of Jimi had he lived
longer.  There is no question that a greater exploration of jazz was
in the works, specifically with Gil Evans and Miles Davis.  At the time
Jimi left Seattle he was not yet 18, so I expect his guitar playing
abilities were fairly rudimentary at the time.  My point has more to do
with his personality, his resolve to conquer new terrain and an
adaptable spirit.

If we are going to extrapolate on what might have been for Jimi, why
not imagine what might have happened had Hendrix come of age musically
not in 1965, but in 1990 in Seattle.  Had he gone to Garfield High
School in the post-school desegregation era, then he would have been
exposed to the best music program in the city as part of the magnet
(bussing) program.  Also, with Jimi's strong inclination to find and
follow vibrant musical scenes, I could imagine him being a force in the
blues-rock based Grunge scene.  The Grunge scene shared much of the
vibrancy of the psychedelic rock scene so it is easy to imagine Jimi
there.  The speculation gets ridiculous however considering that no
greater single influence on the grunge guitarists than Jimi himself. 
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #63 of 154: Scott MacFarlane (s-macfarlane) Sat 17 Nov 07 15:16
    
that [there was] no greater single influence on the grunge guitarists
than Jimi himself.
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #64 of 154: Steven Roby (jimijames) Sat 17 Nov 07 20:14
    
>> Jimi had more soul and R&B influence to his Bluesy base, and with
all the innovative distortions and backfeeding, he sounded like, well,
like Jimi Hendrix.

Has anyone seen the bonus footage on the new "Jimi Hendrix Experience
at Monterey" DVD? I'm talking about the February 1967 show at the Corn
Exchange - only two songs; "Like a Rolling Stone" and "Stone Free." If
not, go rent/buy it now. This is the earliest concert footage of the
Experience, and is simply amazing. The Experience had only formed five
months prior. The footage is B&W, the sound is fair, but it gives us a
glimpse at what Jimi James and the Blue Flames may have sounded like in
1966; raw, funky, somewhat unpolished, but Jimi's the main attraction.
He has that wonderful military jacket on, and there's a brief intro
that explains the history behind it - I won't spoil it.

Take a look at the crowd as the camera pans; young white kids, some
even with ties, having a grand time. If you watch closely you'll see
Kathy Etchingham, Jimi's English girlfriend, sitting on top of
someone's shoulders, and waving her arms. Jimi's taking his R&B/Blues
roots, choppin' it up American style (much like he did on the 1965
"Night Train" video), and the kids were lovin' it. Funny, four months
later at Monterey, the group got even better. Compare this club version
of "Rolling Stone to the one at Monterey, and the band explodes. What
a buzz kill, a few weeks later he's opening for the Monkees. I've come
across a great shot of Jimi playing at an outdoor Monkees show. The
Monkees bass drum head is elevated behind the group ready for the turn
around.

Of the top five shows I'd love to find on tape - in no order:

Any Experience show opening for The Monkees
A Jimi James and the Blue Flames show at Cafe Wha?
The New Jersey 1968 concert, after MLK's death. Jimi supposedly played
just one song and left the crowd in tears.
The Harlem concert in 1969. I do have a tape of this, but the sound is
terrible.
Jimi's award winning ($25) performance at The Apollo. 

What's your opinion? 
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #65 of 154: Darrell Jonsson (jonsson) Sun 18 Nov 07 04:56
    <scribbled by jonsson Sun 18 Nov 07 06:12>
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #66 of 154: Darrell Jonsson (jonsson) Sun 18 Nov 07 05:24
    <scribbled by jonsson Sun 18 Nov 07 06:13>
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #67 of 154: Darrell Jonsson (jonsson) Sun 18 Nov 07 05:30
    <scribbled by jonsson Sun 18 Nov 07 06:12>
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #68 of 154: Darrell Jonsson (jonsson) Sun 18 Nov 07 06:11
    <scribbled by jonsson Sun 18 Nov 07 08:06>
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #69 of 154: Short Version (jonsson) Sun 18 Nov 07 06:27
    

>That [there was] no greater single influence on the grunge guitarists
>than Jimi himself.

Jimmy Page comes in as a formidable contender to that claim.

>The Jimi Hendrix Experience didn't sound...like Cream...Fleetwood
Mac...Savoy Brown...Procol Harem...Jethro Tull...Pink Floyd...Traffic,
Humble Pie...

Checkout: Graham Bond, James Marshall, Soft Machine, Yardbirds 65-66,
Robert Wyatt... and Yardbirds/Page/Beck's 'Happenings 10 years time
ago' from 1966.
Also Beatles 

>Maybe if Jimi hadn't died, instead of the Jazz fusion angle, he would
>have gone back to Sweden to raise his kid?

Hendrix as well would of been very comfortable with the shamanic
scandinavian Jazz orientations of the likes of Jan Gabarek and Marie 
Boine, perhaps far more comfortable than sitting in with Pearl Jam. 

>Do you think he might have revolutionized the nyckelharpa?  :=)
Guitar has been mentioned.

>Jackson Street = London in Jimi's sound..

One thing to ask about the above Jackson Street quote,
is that if the music skills Jimi learned in Seattle
could of easily been learned in Chicago, Detroit or Memphis,
or elsewhere?

As to the post-punk era, Hendrix's spirit lives on
more directly via BRC (NYC's Black Rock Coalition),
than grunge IMHO.

The late Paul Bowles said he felt Tangiers to be the 
center of the universe. If someone wants to feel that way about
Seattle then why not? One thing is clear, to revise music history 
via a western-centric POV at this point in time will be 
swimming upstream.
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #70 of 154: Scott MacFarlane (s-macfarlane) Sun 18 Nov 07 08:49
    
<<As to the post-punk era, Hendrix's spirit lives on
more directly via BRC (NYC's Black Rock Coalition),
than grunge IMHO.>>

This comment related to Grunge comes from the key guitarists in this
Seattle scene who love to cite Jimi as a fundamental influence. If by
BRC you mean a group like Living Color, then Jimi's influence was
significant there, as well.


<<The late Paul Bowles said he felt Tangiers to be the 
center of the universe. If someone wants to feel that way about
Seattle then why not? One thing is clear, to revise music history 
via a western-centric POV at this point in time will be 
swimming upstream.>>

I was watching the Univ of Washington VS Univ of Cal football game
yesterday as I was typing one of these posts.  The UW band started
playing a Hendrix tune and the announcers were making one of those
routine proclamations about Jimi growing up in Seattle. This is
celebrity provincialism, and not what I'm talking about.

I've been very surprised in this discussion how readily people want to
all but discount the influence of Jimi's Seattle/West Coast upbringing
on who he became. As a poor kid, Jimi didn't go anywhere outside of
the Northwest until he joined the Army. He lived nearly 18 out of his
almost 28 years in Seattle.  Of course Seattle influenced him.  He
wasn't from Memphis, Chicago, or Detroit. When I watch him in
interviews, he doesn't behave as though he came from those places. 
Jimi was so driven as a guitarist and so adaptable that he figured out
a way to fit into very different scenes in the deep South, NYC and
London.  

I think its irrefutible that Jimi Hendrix, beyond borrowing from many
traditions, styles and cutting edge delivery systems, also synthesized
a sound and style that was uniquely his own.  That yearning to "start
over" with his life [away from Seattle] hardly extols Seattle as some
center of the universe.  And maybe this "frontier" sensibility is not a
uniquely a West Coast phenomenon, but it was what defined the western
North American experience, historically.  This is not revising "music"
history, this is trying to create a context for better understanding
and appreciating the musical and cultural phenomenon that was Jimi
Hendrix.

As for Paul Bowles, the fact that Truman Capote spent most of his
adult life in NYC, didn't make him a New York writer. He was a Southern
writer.  James Joyce is never associated with Paris or Germany where
he lived much of his adult life. He was the consummate Irishman.  Kurt
Cobain, Pearl Jam, SoundGarden, and Alice In Chains created what could
be called a Seattle rock sound, not Jimi, although Jimi was hugely
influential. I think we've outlined in this conference the strong
influences of the "Chitlin' Circuit" and London in Jimi's development
as a musician, but to obviate the first two-thirds of his life in
Seattle as a fundamental influence that shaped him as a person is
ridiculous. 
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #71 of 154: "The Best for Your Health!" (rik) Sun 18 Nov 07 09:05
    
I think Darrell is pointing to something very important here.   Personally,
I don't hear Seattle in the music of Jimi Hendrix.   In the few
pre-experience clips I've seen of him, in his role as a support player for
other singers, he seems to be a fairly standard R&B musician.   He genius
seems to me to have been his expropriation of techniques developed by white
players - particularly British players - and, by way of his massive talent,
raising the bar.   He was a musical prodigy, but he didn't come from
nowhere.    Like Ed, I alway saw him as a British act, coming from the same
family as the Who, the Yardbirds, and Cream.

Musical genius that he was, his musicianship was only part of what made
him.  His raw musical talent (I think of him as the Michael Jordan of 60s
guitar) was simply a platform for what really put him over top.   He was an
entertainer.   He had the Elvis X factor.  He was paradoxically shy and
blatantly sexual.   He was attractive, and dangerous, but not too
dangerous.  And while many of his English contemporaries were still
dressing like R&B stars, in suits, he had gone completely Haight-Ashbury,
in full beads and leathers.

The most illuminating evidence in this discussion, alas, does not exist.
That would be tapes of the conversations he must have had with Chas.
Chandler.   I think the invention of Jimi Hendrix was a collaboration, and
I'd love to know the details of the contributions of his manager.    You
can't talk intelligently about the rise of Elvis Presley without talking
about Col. Tom Parker, but Chandler always seems to go missing in
discussing Jimi.   I suspect that he contributed more than we know.
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #72 of 154: Ed Ward (captward) Sun 18 Nov 07 09:10
    
The only time I ever saw him was when Jimmy James and the Blue Flames
were backing John Hammond, Jr., of all people, at the Gaslight Cafe on
McDougal St. in New York. I was too young to have any experience with
electric guitar music, although I'd already seen Dylan electric, but I
do remember the band wearing suits and the guitarist being pretty good.


Talk about a tape *I'd* like to have... 

Then the Butterfield Band came to the Gaslight, and I interviewed
Michael Bloomfield many years later about how he'd sneak across the
street during their breaks to see Hendrix perform. From what he said,
it would seem that a lot of the technique was already down, but not
many people were going to see him. Re-importing him made him exotic. 
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #73 of 154: "The Best for Your Health!" (rik) Sun 18 Nov 07 09:13
    
(Aside to Scott, who is aware of my obsession with the Swedish band, Vasen,
and who actually got to see them play a home game in Stockholm.   The player
who makes Vasen unique, and who lifts them from a superb folk-based act into
high art, is their stunningly original guitarist, Roger Tallroth)
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #74 of 154: Scott MacFarlane (s-macfarlane) Sun 18 Nov 07 09:49
    
<<  he had gone completely Haight-Ashbury, in full beads and leathers.

So could we consider Jimi, in addition to his eclectic musical
presence, a well-traveled West Coast black American who became a true
hippie?  Isn't this hippie personna where he and Sly and Arthur Lee can
be differentiated from other black music acts of their time?

 
  
inkwell.vue.312 : Steven Roby, "Black Gold: The Lost Archives of Jimi Hendrix"
permalink #75 of 154: "The Best for Your Health!" (rik) Sun 18 Nov 07 10:36
    
"a well-traveled West Coast black American who became a true
 hippie?"

I don't think he was a hippie.    He changed his mode of dress, and he did
psychedelics, but his lifestyle excesses weren't all that different than
Elvis's or James Brown's, though he does appear to have been a nicer guy
than either of them.  He had the wherewithall to live the libertine
life, and he did so.    By the time he hit, the true hippies had left the
Haight for Bolinas, "the Farm', and points more rural.^

My point was that you have to see him as an entertainer as much as a
musician, and it would be as instructive to investigate the traditions of
entertainers as those of musicians.    When Jimi set his guitar on fire at
Monterey, was it a spontaneous act of showmanship, or was it a reaction to
having watched seen the reaction to the destruction that Townshend and
Daltry wreaked in closing their set?
  

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