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JIMI HENDRIX

Proto-Prog • United States


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Jimi Hendrix biography
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Jimi Hendrix was born in Seattle WA on November 11, 1942. Originally named Johnny Allen by his mother, his father later changed his name to James Marshall Hendrix. Many years later his manager Chas Chandler would suggest changing his name to Jimi.

Jimi started playing the guitar as a young teenager and picked up influences from Muddy Waters, B.B. King, Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry, Eddie Cochran and others. In the early to mid-60s, under the psuedonym Jimmy James, Jimi worked with the top RnB artists of the day including Sam Cooke, Wilson Pickett, B.B. King, Little Richard, Ike and Tina Turner, The Isley Brothers and many more. In 1965 he struck out on his own in New York City under the name Jimmy James and the Blue Flames. In 1966 Chas Chandler convinced Jimi to move to London where he hooked up with Mitch Mitchell and Noel Redding to form The Jimi Hendrix Experience.

This move would an unleash a torrent of creativity for Hendrix as he immersed himself in the new proto-progressive rock scene in London. No longer content to play just RnB, Jimi was encouraged to pursue his interests in jazz, folk, British flavored psychedelic rock and manipulation of pure sound. Not only was his new drummer, Mitch Mitchell, encouraging Hendrix to stretch the boundaries of rock composition and improvisation, but Hendrix's involvement as a part-time member of The Soft Machine (as bassist) lead to an ongoing musical relationship with the jazz inluenced drummer Robert Wyatt, who was also a cross-influence with Jimi as they both rewrote the book on what rock could be. Although Hendrix continued to play a good dose of American roots music in his live sets, in the recording studio he began to explore new territory.

The Experience's first album, Are You Experienced, was a blast of Brtish psychedelic pop-rock, with the emphasis on hard rock with some jazzy Canterbury type numbers as well. The next two albums would reveal a bit more of Jimi's American roots, while also expanding his progressive song writing tendencies. In early 1968, songs like 1983 and Burning the Midnight Lamp put The Experience on the forefront of rock composition and execution. Meanwhile Jimi's innovative skills as a producer and sculptor of pure sound began to take flight. As a live performance band, The Experience could not be touched as they revolutionised the world of rock with their explosive performances.

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Experience Hendrix: The Best of Jimi HendrixExperience Hendrix: The Best of Jimi Hendrix
Sony Legacy 2010
Audio CD$9.00
$4.01 (used)
Electric Ladyland (2 Vinyl)Electric Ladyland (2 Vinyl)
Sony Legacy 2010
Vinyl$18.48
$14.99 (used)
Blues (2 LPs)Blues (2 LPs)
Sony Legacy 2011
Vinyl$15.99
$16.40 (used)
Jimi Hendrix: Live at the Fillmore EastJimi Hendrix: Live at the Fillmore East
Remastered
Experience Hendrix 1999
Audio CD$48.99
$17.99 (used)
BluesBlues
Sony Legacy 2014
Audio CD$5.55
$9.29 (used)
Machine Gun Jimi Hendrix The Fillmor E East 12\31\1969 (First Show)Machine Gun Jimi Hendrix The Fillmor E East 12\31\1969 (First Show)
Sony Music Canada Inc. 2016
Audio CD$9.32
$9.05 (used)
The Jimi Hendrix Experience (Box Set)The Jimi Hendrix Experience (Box Set)
Box set
Sony Legacy 2013
Audio CD$28.99
$32.99 (used)
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JIMI HENDRIX discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

JIMI HENDRIX top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.26 | 399 ratings
The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Are You Experienced
1967
3.99 | 269 ratings
The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Axis - Bold As Love
1967
3.96 | 350 ratings
The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Electric Ladyland
1968
3.37 | 68 ratings
The Cry Of Love
1971
3.97 | 38 ratings
Rainbow Bridge
1971
2.08 | 5 ratings
Roots Of Hendrix
1972
3.18 | 26 ratings
War Heroes
1972
2.25 | 15 ratings
Loose Ends
1973
1.98 | 22 ratings
Crash Landing
1975
2.57 | 18 ratings
Midnight Lightning
1975
2.36 | 9 ratings
Nine To The Universe
1980
2.31 | 7 ratings
Morning Symphony Ideas
2000
3.21 | 52 ratings
Valleys Of Neptune
2010
4.04 | 36 ratings
People, Hell And Angels
2013

JIMI HENDRIX Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.07 | 5 ratings
Historic Performances Recorded at the Monterey International Pop Festival (Hendrix & Otis Redding)
1970
3.77 | 110 ratings
Band Of Gypsys
1970
4.25 | 4 ratings
Experience
1971
3.38 | 17 ratings
Isle of Wight
1971
3.98 | 21 ratings
Hendrix in the West
1972
4.00 | 2 ratings
More Experience
1972
3.68 | 15 ratings
The Jimi Hendrix Concerts
1982
4.18 | 19 ratings
Jimi Plays Monterey
1986
3.14 | 7 ratings
Band of Gypsys 2
1986
4.06 | 24 ratings
Live at Winterland
1987
3.41 | 8 ratings
Radio One
1988
3.50 | 2 ratings
Live & Unreleased: The Radio Show
1989
3.50 | 2 ratings
Lifelines: The Jimi Hendrix Story
1990
4.25 | 4 ratings
Stages
1991
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Early Years Live
1991
3.00 | 2 ratings
Bleeding Heart
1994
3.85 | 20 ratings
Woodstock
1994
4.44 | 24 ratings
BBC Sessions
1998
3.00 | 2 ratings
Live at the Oakland Coliseum
1998
4.56 | 28 ratings
Live at Woodstock
1999
4.09 | 24 ratings
Live at the Fillmore East
1999
2.05 | 2 ratings
Live in Ottawa
2001
3.82 | 11 ratings
Blue Wild Angel: Live at the Isle of Wight
2002
4.18 | 9 ratings
Live At Berkeley
2003
3.05 | 3 ratings
Live At L'Olympia, Paris
2004
3.29 | 5 ratings
Machine Gun: The Fillmore East First Show 12/31/1969
2016

JIMI HENDRIX Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

4.78 | 26 ratings
Jimi Hendrix - Live at Woodstock
1999
4.60 | 10 ratings
Band of Gypsys (Live At The Fillmore East)
1999
3.33 | 3 ratings
Rainbow Bridge
2000
2.00 | 1 ratings
The Jimi Hendrix Experience - DVD Video Sampler
2001
3.67 | 3 ratings
Experience
2001
3.48 | 12 ratings
Blue Wild Angel (Live at the Isle of Wight)
2002
4.40 | 5 ratings
Jimi Plays Berkeley
2003
4.19 | 12 ratings
Live At Monterey (DVD)
2007
0.00 | 0 ratings
Experience Hendrix
2008
3.00 | 3 ratings
At Last... The Beginning: The Making of Electric Ladyland
2009

JIMI HENDRIX Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.98 | 16 ratings
Smash Hits
1968
0.00 | 0 ratings
Electric Jimi Hendrix
1968
4.33 | 3 ratings
Soundtrack Recordings from the Film Jimi Hendrix
1973
0.00 | 0 ratings
Musique Originale du Film Jimi Plays Berkeley
1975
4.04 | 4 ratings
The Essential Jimi Hendrix (Vol. 1)
1978
4.00 | 1 ratings
The Essential Jimi Hendrix (Vol. 2)
1979
3.67 | 3 ratings
The Singles Album
1983
4.00 | 3 ratings
Kiss the Sky
1984
3.22 | 4 ratings
Cornerstones-Jimi Hendrix 1967-1970
1990
3.21 | 23 ratings
The Ultimate Experience
1992
4.04 | 36 ratings
Blues
1994
2.53 | 5 ratings
Voodoo Soup
1995
3.62 | 48 ratings
First Rays of the New Rising Sun
1997
2.71 | 16 ratings
South Saturn Delta
1997
3.54 | 15 ratings
Experience Hendrix: The Best of Jimi Hendrix
1998
4.40 | 5 ratings
Voodoo Child: The Jimi Hendrix Collection
2001
3.04 | 4 ratings
The Baggy's Rehearsal Sessions
2002
5.00 | 1 ratings
The Singles Collection
2003
3.00 | 1 ratings
Martin Scorsese Presents the Blues: Jimi Hendrix
2003
4.57 | 5 ratings
West Coast Seatle Boy - The Jimi Hendrix Anthology
2010

JIMI HENDRIX Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

4.07 | 9 ratings
Hey Joe
1966
4.13 | 5 ratings
Hey Joe
1967
4.33 | 6 ratings
Purple Haze
1967
4.00 | 6 ratings
The Wind Cries Mary
1967
4.50 | 2 ratings
The Burning Of The Midnight Lamp
1967
3.96 | 7 ratings
Foxey Lady
1967
0.00 | 0 ratings
Up From the Skies
1968
4.67 | 3 ratings
All Along the Watchtower
1968
3.50 | 2 ratings
Crosstown Traffic
1968
3.00 | 2 ratings
Stone Free
1969
4.00 | 1 ratings
lzabella
1970
5.00 | 1 ratings
Voodoo Chile (Slight Return)
1970
0.00 | 0 ratings
No Such Animal
1970
0.00 | 0 ratings
Freedom
1971
0.00 | 0 ratings
Dolly Dagger
1971
0.00 | 0 ratings
Gypsy Eyes EP
1971
0.00 | 0 ratings
Gloria
1979
3.00 | 2 ratings
Fire
1982
4.00 | 2 ratings
All Along The Watchtower
1982
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Peel Sessions
1988
4.00 | 3 ratings
Day Tripper
1988
0.00 | 0 ratings
Jimi Hendrix Experience Picture Disc
1989
5.00 | 1 ratings
Crosstown Traffic
1990
0.00 | 0 ratings
Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window?
1998
0.00 | 0 ratings
Get DMXperienced
1999
2.91 | 2 ratings
Merry Christmas And Happy New Year
2005
0.00 | 0 ratings
Valleys of Neptune
2010

JIMI HENDRIX Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Valleys Of Neptune by HENDRIX, JIMI album cover Studio Album, 2010
3.21 | 52 ratings

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Valleys Of Neptune
Jimi Hendrix Proto-Prog

Review by AZF

5 stars This album is the closest we've had commercially released of The Jimi Hendrix Experience (Until the excellent West Coast Seattle Boy) than could be thought of as The Beatles Anthology. Or even the closest to the recent Pink Floyd studio boxset. It contains three tracks of Mitch Mitchell and the legend Noel Redding overdubbed in 1987, under the watchful eye of Chas Chandler. It predates "Free As A Bird" by many years and is more satisfying than the final two Beatles singles made from Lennon's gifted tapes. Possible legalities negated as all the personnel involved are no longer on this planet to hear the 'Valleys Of Neptune" as it was released in 2010.

12 tracks and excluding the three tracks not mentioned as in introduced, there is enough material of the Experience that together with some of the highlights of the second disc of "West Coast Seattle Boy" would have made an impressive stop gap and final word on the band had it been compiled and released in 1969 and what an insight into Jimi's perfection the album is. And what an oversight of management my fantasy outtakes album never happened in 1969.

One interesting part of the album for me are the time snaps of Noel Redding in 1969, sounding flippant and bored with yet another play through of a life staple "Hear My Train A'Coming". My preferred version is the BBC version if not his single acoustic filmed. Despite how bored Noel sounds, Hendrix paints a canvas and sounds so relaxed but confident. Compare that to the post-9/70 Redding on the final track "Crying Blue Rain". A snapshot of Jimi recorded in London self produced that in June the 5th, Noel and Mitch added their parts that not just pick up from where they left off with the slow blues, they keep up and follow Jimi as he has an instrumental freakout of chord sequences. Leaving the album and listener left alone in the stratosphere to descend back to your lives.

Although some material was reworked by the driven Jimi, the fact that Ezy Ryder got the riff means we were robbed of "Lullaby For The Summer" being associated with the greatest way the band could have bowed out of.

It sounds great listened to in full on these bright warm nights, the studio take of Red House is better than the version on the US Are You Experienced?. But it sounds more lived in. You can hear the fact Hendrix wanted to get the sound bigger. You can hear the band having everything they could possibly do just give expert performances that make the wrong notes and off beats hard to notice at first.

As excellent the recent live CDs of Hendrix have been, this studio album is as essential as First Rays Of The New Rising Sun and even Axis : Bold As Love. (Despite it being recorded after Electric Ladyland). When he lets the guitar do the taking there really is no other. Stripped away from the endless retakes and attempts intended to be optimum, Jimi's messages still sound like they could have been made today.

5

 The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Are You Experienced by HENDRIX, JIMI album cover Studio Album, 1967
4.26 | 399 ratings

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The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Are You Experienced
Jimi Hendrix Proto-Prog

Review by SteveG

5 stars The initial US release of Are You Experienced featured "Purple Haze", "Hey Joe" and "The Wind Cries Mary" replacing "Redhouse", "Can You See Me" , and "Remember" from the UK version released earlier. And the album was all the better for it. Combined with psych rock classics like "Manic Depression", "Foxy Lady", "May This be Love" along with the studio manipulated space rock classic titled "3rd Stone From The Sun", made the album a musical, as well as a cultural statement, that rock was never going to be quite the same again. There was no pretending that Hendrix was an American rock pioneer like Chuck Berry, Elvis and all else who preceded him, which was far from the case with so many copycat British artists. Hendrix ironically reclaimed rock from the hands of the Brits and simply showed how it should be done, after starting off his brief but ultimately cataclysmic career in the UK before heading back to the US and forever cementing his guitar god status.

But what is incredibly missed is the appreciation of Hendrix as a songwriter. All the screaming guitar notes drenched in feedback would be nothing more than noise without solid catchy songs to be attached to. And Hendrix's chart rivals were no slouches at song craft and included the Beatles, The Who, Bob Dylan, Simon and Garfunkel, et al.

Heavily influenced by the Beatles' studio craft of vari speed tape effects, flanging, phasing, etc., it is the only thing that dates some of Hendrix's songs. Even jazz inflected drummer Mitch Mitchel and bassist Noel Redding elevated their playing to complement and, frankly, not to be overpowered by Hendrix's guitar assaults, while also being able to mellow out sufficiently on Hendrix's quieter reflective moments and provide lush backing..

There's really noting more that I can say about a group of songs, or an artist, so well known except this. Are You Experienced in it's former US released format on CD, with omitted UK's issued songs added in as bonus tracks, is still a refreshing mind blowing listening experience that is still as enjoyable and as ground breaking today as when Are You Experienced was first released in 1967.

 West Coast Seatle Boy - The Jimi Hendrix Anthology by HENDRIX, JIMI album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2010
4.57 | 5 ratings

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West Coast Seatle Boy - The Jimi Hendrix Anthology
Jimi Hendrix Proto-Prog

Review by AZF

5 stars This is the greatest box set ever associated with Jimi Hendrix.A DVD containing a Timeline (Expertly narrated by Bootstrap Collins) of Jimi's letters from the Army. All the way up to his plans before his death. News reports of this are also included. Full song clips of TV performances. The greatest DVD (It knocks the Joe Boyd film!) is also available separately, should you find the box set price too much at the moment.

4 discs, the first is an alternative R'n'B Also Fans Of The 1960's. As it charts Jimi's session and early bands. The second disc starts us off during the making of "Are You Experienced?", and goes up to "Electric Ladyland", complete with acoustic demo tracks. This is probably the disc I play the most. The third disc is post "Electric Ladyland" in the first half and post Noel Redding for the second half. Woodstock guitarist Larry Lee sings a self composed sing "Mastermind" which is one of my highlights of the box. The final disc is either my second most played, or joint first, but it starts with an incredible Band Of Gypsies live take of "Stone Free" that Jimi transforms into a New Year's Eve celebration. Disc four has some incredible studio material from the same Band Of Gypsies that were tragically broken up. The last half of the fourth disc has Jimi paired with Billy Cox from his last band and Mitch Mitchell. One of my other highlights of the box is the instrumental "All God's Children" and finally the box ends with "Suddenly November Morning". A haunting acoustic demo which begs the confirmation and release of a whole album of acoustic Hendrix!

It was 2010 when I first got this box. I still listen to it constantly until forcing myself to change the discs. I feel it is a full five star effort. It is significant Experience Hendrix hasn't made another box. This would take some beating in both presentation (Book with rare photos sandwiched between the two discs on either bookend. DVD in envelope page at the end of the text), content and overall musicianship in the "West Coast Seattle Boy- The Jimi Hendrix Experience" box set.

 Machine Gun: The Fillmore East First Show 12/31/1969 by HENDRIX, JIMI album cover Live, 2016
3.29 | 5 ratings

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Machine Gun: The Fillmore East First Show 12/31/1969
Jimi Hendrix Proto-Prog

Review by SteveG

3 stars Contracts, conflicts and confusion. This pretty much sums up the Band Of Gypsys (Jimi Hendrix, Buddy Miles and Billy Cox) first set performed and recorded on December 31, 1969 at the now legendary Fillmore East. As many Hendrix fans know, this was the premier live outing of Hendrix's new vehicle that is claimed to have put him back into the arena of black music after two years of Hendrix vehemently dodging the long held stereotype that black guitarists could only play the blues and R&B. Both genres in which Jimi cut his teeth both on an amateur and professional level, before skyrocketing to international stardom playing feedback drenched acid rock and psychedelic with an accessible pop vibe as part of the famous Jimi Hendrix Experience. The Experience also featured white British cohorts in the form of bassist Noel Redding and drummer Mitch Mitchel. These four Fillmore concerts recored in two days were also a means for Hendrix to honor a contract dispute and eventual settlement to deliver a album to PPX/Capital Records as part of a court settlement.

Hendrix's motivation to go into a soul, R&B, funk, and blues direction is manifold and frankly, quite speculative. However, it's the 1969 Band Of Gypsys album that has solidified his long time standing as a blues guitarist of renown, regardless if the capricious Hendrix had possibly not intended to keep pursuing that musical direction had he not perished.

This first set on the first night of the Fillmore New Year's Eve concerts is basically a run through of Hendrix's newer, if not brand new songs, and the introduction of Buddy Miles as an R&B force, both vocally and musically, in the newly formed Band Of Gypsys.

With out a doubt, this first set is subpar to what has been officially released on either the Band Of Gypsys LP and the additional material released much later on Live At The Filmore East in 1999. Sticking out glaringly is that the magnificent solo on the song "Machine Gun", recorded the second night and released on the Band Of Gypsys album, is nowhere to be found on this first night's jittery performance and that Buddy Miles, as rock steady as is his drumming is, is a bit over the top with his "soulful" backing vocals on songs such as "Power Of Soul." In fact both "Power of Soul" and "Message to Love" would be both be better performed on the Band Of Gypsys album. Another glaring omission is any form of the powerhouse song "Who Knows", which was not to be performed until the second set of the first night's shows and done better on the following day's sets. Songs featured on this first set such as "Hear My Train A Comin' and" Isabella" are perfunctionary at best.

Where the confusion comes in is on the part of the subdued audience, their unfamiliarity with Hendrix's new material and his refusal play past well known hits like "Purple Haze" and "Foxy Lady." He would do so shorty later on the second of the night's set as more than likely, it was in reaction to Hendrix's own startled response when a member of the subdued crowd wished him a Happy New Year. It's seems that Jimi forgot.

Imagine that. New Year's Eve in NYC and the Band Of Gypsys sounded like they just finished playing at a wake. Stick with the Band Of Gypsys album form 1969 and seek out the now out of print Live At The Fillmore East CD from 1999, as both feature far superior performances. And keep Machine Gun: The Filllmore East First Show only for it's historical value. If you're of a mind to.

 The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Axis - Bold As Love by HENDRIX, JIMI album cover Studio Album, 1967
3.99 | 269 ratings

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The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Axis - Bold As Love
Jimi Hendrix Proto-Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE & JR/F/Canterbury Teams

5 stars At the beginning of 1966, JIMI HENDRIX was struggling to even make minimum wage playing R&B covers. By the end of 1966, he had finished recording his first album "Are You Experienced?" and released it to great success as THE JIMI HENDRIX EXPERIENCE band giving the rock world a must needed kick in the arse. By the beginning of 1967, the band was famous worldwide and penuriousness was replaced by every pressure known to the successful musician and piled upon the trio due to contractual obligations, thus a second album was demanded to be released within the same year of 1967. Sooooo THE EXPERIENCE rushed into the studio and recorded their second album AXIS: BOLD AS LOVE which came out in December, 1967 in the UK but was held back in the US because it was feared it would interfere with sales of the first album, so it was released in May of 1968. Typical record company malarky of the day!

AXIS: BOLD AS LOVE basically continues offering the same psychedelic, energetic and innovative blues rock concoctions that HENDRIX was so successful in constructing on album number one with his elegant display of melodic expansion in the most creative ways. The fact that this band so deftly and proficiently pumped out a majorly spectacular array of brilliant songs is a testament to the power of JIMI HENDRIX and explains how he was able to record decades worth of music in a very short time span when new material is still being released almost fifty years after his untimely passing. The tracks on this album were done with a healthy dose of studio recording techniques of the day and as a result most were never performed in a live setting with the exception of "Spanish Castle Magic" and "Little Wing" but THE EXPERIENCE successfully conjured up a brilliant followup to their spectacular ground breaking debut with grace.

Neck in neck with The Beatles in innovating rock'n'roll, AXIS: BOLD AS LOVE begins with the lysergic mind expansive trip of "EXP" which takes the art of microphone and harmonic feedback to new extreme levels for the day and simulates a strange close encounter of the third kind with extraterrestrial contact. After this strange album introduction, we get some more familiar HENDRIX action with a psychedelic funk rock narration of concerned extraterrestrial life returning to the Earth concerned of the abuses of the top dog species, namely, homo sapiens and how they are degrading the ecosystems upon which their lives are dependent. HENDRIX was totally in tune with the ecological issues plaguing humankind and was ahead of the rest of the world in adapting these issues to music. That would have made a great concept album actually but the album continues on a track by track basis with each song having its own theme and meaning.

Brilliantly THE EXPERIENCE eschews AXIS: from being a clone of "Are You??" Instead it creates a somewhat similar but more nonchalant way of incorporating the recent upgrades in the rock universe with the usual psychedelic rock guitar riffage of HENDRIX himself with the jazz inspired drum workouts of Mitch Mithcell while the bass guitars of Noel Redding provide the most stable and grounding attributes of the music with the occasional jazz inspired methods as well. The album also adds lots of new instruments to the mix adding a more diverse feel from the debut. HENDRIX contributes piano and recorder, Mitchell adds some glockenspiel and Redding offers his best foot stomping percussion. AXIS: also has the best album cover of all THE EXPERIENCE years releases!

THE JIMI HENDRIX EXPERIENCE is certainly an archival type of band beyond most our musical experiences unless you are well into you 60s at this point. I did not start out loving this album by any means. In fact i always thought HENDRIX was fairly boring! However, there is something about these albums including this second one that has the power to burrow into the future and into my DNA that has infected me with admiration. True this is not technically as adept as what has come to develop over the decades that follow, but this was truly innovative at the time and if the listener simply resonates with the music, it will surely reveal its time period prowess and charm with merely a few attentive and open-minded listens. I now regard this album as much as a brilliant masterpiece as the debut. The musical elements sewn together with the concepts are outstanding and considering this was a trio makes it all the more impressive.

 Live at the Fillmore East by HENDRIX, JIMI album cover Live, 1999
4.09 | 24 ratings

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Live at the Fillmore East
Jimi Hendrix Proto-Prog

Review by Atavachron
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Jimi Hendrix just wanted to play. And through all the accomplishment, extraordinary success among both peers and fans, and a singular artistry that is sometimes mistaken for novelty, it is clear that what he was really interested in was a choice riff and a good time. Hendrix was one of the only guitarists of his era that progressed internally as an instrumentalist, not just via the gifts of a talented ensemble. And yet as a sensitive kid he endured the pain of troubled parents, a society wherein you could be shot for playing music while black, and the unenviable choice between prison or military service. But he always had an ax. Even when his father refused to buy him one, Jimi rummaged a single-stringed uke until it fell apart, eventually bought a five-buck acoustic and when he couldn't be heard over bandmates, finally tucked-in to a Supro Ozark 1560 S.

But, as is often the case with brilliance, greatness was not evident right away. Jimi Hendrix had to uncover the now all too obvious: The electric guitar and amplifier were tools of sonic art that hadn't even been scratched at with any high amount of gravity, and he began to see and hear what others couldn't seem to. Brits will sometimes facetiously suggest Hendrix was theirs, that somehow because his popular rise was backed by Englishmen the Hendrix legacy belongs to London. Yeah, no; not when his finest moments were with the dazzling if misspelled A Band of Gypsys-- old cohorts Buddy Miles and Billy Cox. Further, the notion that Jimi had been pressured to have an all-black group is specious. It ain't true. The chemistry with Cox & Miles was just better, it always had been, and that counts.

A stickler for being in tune and yet as loose-handed as anyone, a fearless adventurer who, unlike Jim Morrison, could stop leaping into the fire when it burned too hot, Jimi, we hardly knew ye. So I was thrilled to have cornered the long deceased grand legend late one night in a bustling backstage at a Los Angeles nightclub, his first interview with the Living since his death in September, 1970. People of all sorts traipsed back & forth through the narrow backstage anteroom just outside the small greenroom we sat in; frantic roadies, groupies consoling other groupies, nervous managers, the lightshow people panicking over a broken liquid-slide projector, deadbeat vendors getting kicked out, a lone photographer struggling for a good shot, all generating a familiar din that said rock 'n roll. As we began speaking, James Marshall Hendrix took on a warm expression and his eyes widened, bringing me in.

A - Is this all for you?; I mean do they know you're here tonight?

Jimi - I dunno, man, it's just some good energy. It's just happening, y'know --

A - I recently caught some video of you at the Fillmore East shows in '69/'70, video I didn't know existed, taken from the balcony. It was illuminating to see footage of you perform without the florid camerawork that prevailed in concert films then. I noticed how being a left-hander may've influenced your sound, do you know what I mean?

Jimi - Yeah yeah, totally, they say it shouldn't make a difference, left or right, but it does, yeah.

A - Your left hand, the picking hand, was reverse-positioned, almost contorted, much like left-handed people write and draw, and it seemed to allow you a fluidity perhaps inaccessible by other players.

Jimi - Y'know I always kinda noticed that but never put it into words. Right-on, man, now spark that doob in the ashtray.

A - On it. When you add your upside down guitars that were standard strung for a lefty, your hand size with that thumb coming over top to mute an unwanted low E & A, your reach, plus having started on a ukulele, it all must've impacted your style.

Jimi - Yeah it all must have, but, you know, it could've been other things too. We're all so tugged and tapped and moved in life, it all makes a difference. Angles, man, it's in the angles (takes a huge drag on the fattest joint I've ever seen, holds it in, and exhales in a loud tumble of hacking and coughing).

A - The Band of Gypsys project was more than just a heavy blues/funk-rock trio out to fulfill a contract, was it not?

Jimi - It turned into something much more special than the three of us had expected. Our interpersonal connection, the depth of understanding and musical brotherhood we had was unique. You can hear that in our shows. That was a great band.

A - Far tighter and more serious than the act appeared. It was only later when I began to listen carefully to all the shows from New Years Eve 1969, or Berkeley, etc., that I began to hear what you guys were doing and how tight it actually was.

Jimi - I know, some people thought we were sloppy I guess. But no, not for what we were doing. We were all in, baby, a blues revelation, you know? You couldn't stop us, we could play anyone under the table that year.

A - Let's talk about the New Years Eve 1969 material not included on the Band of Gypsys LP, released later as Jimi Hendrix Live at the Fillmore East. I'm sure it's a thrill to see live but If you'll forgive me I'm gonna skip past twelve minutes of 'Stone Free' and jump to 'Power of Soul', a nice sample of the killer riffage that was spewing out of you guys at the time.

Jimi - This should'a opened the record, or I should say we should've opened with this one, 'Power of Soul'. It's a good warmup for us and them, the audience.

A - That modulation up a step, I love that.

Jimi - Yeah see that's the thing; it's just a two fret change-up but because the context is hard blues, it works. It's unexpected. And then this kinda lazy 'Train 'a Comin'. Tone, it's all about tone, brother. Can't do nothin' without tone. It's everything. It feeds, provides, it pulls out. It pulls me out, you know what I'm sayin'?

A - I think so. You were meticulous about being and staying in tune, a near impossibility considering the intense palpitations you put your guitars through. If you'll forgive me, how were you able to do that?

Jimi - 'Cause I had to. And a lot of time performing with electric guitars. You do what you have to; I was reaching here, there, I was tweakin' the bar any way I could, warping the neck, palpating. See-- 'Isabella' better, it sounds better, so we played it better, so it is better.

A - And a beautiful, more concisely powerful version of your classic 'Machine Gun' than appears on Band of Gypsys. Were you happy with this performance?

Jimi - This is the first time I've heard it, this set from those shows.

A - Really? I'm amazed. How does the tone strike you?

Jimi - I like it, it's quieter than the Gypsys album version, more room to work. It's a great tune to reshape, rework, like a living sculpture that's never completely finished.

A - Those divebombs are kick-ass - -

Jimi - (smiling widely) You're a real fanboy aren't you?

A - (blushing) Yeah, sorry. The anti-war message is clear, not so much anti-Vietnam War as almost an embracing of war--

Jimi - Well yeah, I didn't want to run away from it, the combat, the violence, I wanted to show it. To give an abstract impression of war, you know; the sounds, ugliness, it was a heavy time. You had to face it and that's how we did it.

A - And 'Voodoo Chile' -- you correct yourself there at the start, wrong key?

Jimi - (laughs uproariously) I forgot about that, hilarious. I don't know what I was thinking.

A - But you actually do remember that flub?

Jimi - Oh yeah, I wasn't so high that I couldn't hear a mistake. By now the acid was kicking in, though, so you know it was all in fun.

A - So you were tripping that night?

Jimi - F*ck yeah.

A - Syd Barrett told me playing while on LSD is almost impossible. Did you find that as well?

Jimi - That's why I put it under my headband, slow easy release, but yeah he's right. It's a bitch if it hits you all at once.

A - 'Who Knows' from the second set, December 31, 1969, different from the familiar version.

Jimi - Less energy, but it's alright I guess. Not my favorite version.

A - A stylish 'Them Changes', a Buddy Miles tune, a good bopper.

Jimi - Yeah it's a fun track. Why not, y'know?

A - And a massive, nearly 14-minute 'Machine Gun'. Awesome, man, I mean your studio records get all the praise but c'mon, this is magical, dark and wonderful, otherworldly stuff.

Jimi - That's what it was supposed to be, to evoke. Yeah, right on, I hear you. It's a heavy trip with this song. Not even a song.

[ * with this he took another several deep tokes on the now smoldering joint and slowly exhaled through his wide-set nostrils]

A - I swear I hear you say "Obama" several times in this; A premonition?

Jimi - (after several moments of uncontrollable laughter) Maybe, man, maybe, I wouldn't be surprised. A lot of magic that night, that band. Then 'Stop', that's a Jerry Ragovoy tune, good little track. Fun to play, and kind of a nice break after a long set.

A - Which it was: what, four sets over two nights? Pretty intense.

Jimi - Yeah, but we loved it. And we wanted to give the people their money's worth. "Earth Blues" good too. Some nice stuff here. Good to hear after all this time. "Burning Desire" kinda shows how improvisational we could be, but we'd gotten so tight, tight-but-lose, it was hard to tell sometimes what was spontaneous and what we'd planned. But that's cool.

It certainly is.

 The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Axis - Bold As Love by HENDRIX, JIMI album cover Studio Album, 1967
3.99 | 269 ratings

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The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Axis - Bold As Love
Jimi Hendrix Proto-Prog

Review by oliverstoned
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars I've always had a sweet spot for this classic among classics. It's the second Hendrix LP and seems overshadowed by its brilliant follower "Electric ladyland". I find in this album a joyfullness and a jazzyness quite unique in Hendrix carrer. After "Exp", a funny experimental noisy opener, "Up from the skies" is a very uplifting jazzy tune, thanks to the special work on drums. The floating wha wha is delicious and Jimi's singing is mellow. Followed by the "hard" rocking "Spanish castles magic" until we get to "Wait until tommorow", another highlight, a funky tune with inspired lyrics that tell a little story. "Ain't no telling" is short but intense. "Little wing" is a masterpiece, only drawback is the duration and the shortened ending guitar solo -actually several guitars mixed together- (for a slightly longer and excellent version, check "Hendrix In the west" live album). "You got me floatin'" is another uplifting, dynamic tune. "Castles made of sand" is really a masterpiece featuring reversed guitars effets, a funky rhythmic, both cool and psychedelic, very far from the usual Hendrix noisy caricature playing purple Haze in concert. Hendrix was not only a virtuoso but also a great arranger and one of the best lyricists ever. "She's so fine" is a rockier tune, with Mitch Mitchell and Noel Redding doing the chorus. "One rainy wish" is a wonderful soft tune which has an oniric and peaceful quality. "Little miss lover" is maybe the "harder" tune along with "Spanish castles magic". "Bold as love" ends the record beautifully with its lyric and intense mood and finishes by a blazing solo.. A masterpiece!
 The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Electric Ladyland by HENDRIX, JIMI album cover Studio Album, 1968
3.96 | 350 ratings

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The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Electric Ladyland
Jimi Hendrix Proto-Prog

Review by Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Electric Ladyland is a diverse, moody, bluesy, and psychedelic slice of late '60's experimental rock. Today when we hear Hendrix on the radio we hear only the handful of hits, which are all great; but listeners to this, the last album by Hendrix, will hear the full scope of his musicianship and songwriting skills. This album has lots to like, from free-form spacey interludes, extended jam sessions, melodic rockin', and most of all - music with feeling. Hendrix's songwriting and playing accomplishes much more than "Purple Haze" would lead you to believe he was capable of making, and all of it exudes the soulful artistry of a real bluesman.

This is probably the reason that Hendrix's music has had the staying power we've seen, that and his straight up excellence on the guitar. Listen to the expressive singing and axework in the live recording of "Voodoo Chile" and you'll see what I'm talking about; music like this just isn't made any more. Very few songs can create the immediate reaction to rock within a few seconds like the opening of Jimi's rendition of "All Along the Watchtower" or the massive riff and solo introduction to "Voodoo Child". Incomparable.

The album as a whole has a lot to offer most any rock fan, though those who thrive on excess and experimentation may get the most of out it. Electric Ladyland has only three songs that are really "classics," the best songs are those that feel like pieces of expressionist art hidden behind the layers of melodic riffing, fuzzy bass lines, and organ textures.

Rounded up to four for historical impact and importance to all music, not just prog, because there's only one Hendrix, and modern rock owes him more than I think we realize.

Songwriting: 3 - Instrumental Performances: 4 - Lyrics/Vocals: 3 - Style/Emotion/Replay: 5

 Band Of Gypsys by HENDRIX, JIMI album cover Live, 1970
3.77 | 110 ratings

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Band Of Gypsys
Jimi Hendrix Proto-Prog

Review by Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Maybe not the definitive Jimi Hendrix live album, but A Band of Gypsys is a solid piece of thick, smokey, R&B goodness none the less.

"Who Knows" and "Machine Gun" give us dark, moody, effects-driven jam sessions which are probably the highlights of the album, while the other tracks are shorter and more conventional, though still with open-ended solo sections. The rhythm section keeps it tight and engaging throughout, making the trio sound like they're working together and playing off each others' riffing.

Interestingly, the setlist doesn't include any of Jimi's iconic hits. Depending on your viewpoint, this is either a strength or a weakness. If you're hoping to hear Jimi jam to tunes that aren't on his greatest hits, then you're in luck. The recording quality is good overall for the period.

Overall a solid, but not great live recording featuring the all-time great rock guitarist

Setlist: 3 - Instrumental Performances: 4 - Stage Energy: 3 - Live Experience: 4

 The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Axis - Bold As Love by HENDRIX, JIMI album cover Studio Album, 1967
3.99 | 269 ratings

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The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Axis - Bold As Love
Jimi Hendrix Proto-Prog

Review by Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Axis: Bold as Love is a feedback filled collection of Hendrix and the times he was playing in. The fuzzy distortion, interesting combination of bluesy and psychedelic sounds, distinct vocals, and trademark guitar sound please throughout.

It's genuinely hard to find anything to complain about from a genuinely iconic musician's legacy, yet despite this, I don't think that there's enough depth here that grabbed me beyond the casual listen. Every one has heard tracks like "If 6 was 9" and "Little Wing", so there's no surprise there, but the other songs come across as filler and jams. Maybe it's because I've heard the highlights of this album so many times on Jimi's "Greatest Hits". The few psychedelic pop songs leave me ambivalent, but luckily the warm sound of Jimi's R&B guitar outnumber those songs 2:1, and the hits of this album are legendary.

So, a solid album that will probably grab some more than others, but is undeniably entertaining regardless.

Songwriting: 3 - Instrumental Performances: 4 - Lyrics/Vocals: 3 - Style/Emotion/Replay: 3

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