The Words and Music of Jimi Hendrix

By David Moskowitz | Go to book overview

Introduction

James “Jimi” Marshall Hendrix (born Johnny Allen Hendrix) was a bit of an American music enigma during much of his professional life. As a young Seattle-born guitarist, Jimi caught the spirit of American roots music and rock and roll. His upbringing was difficult with a father who was absent at his birth, as he was away at war, and a mother who was barely more than a child herself when Jimi was born. Moving frequently and often in the care of those who were not his parents, Jimi began to seek refuge in music. Once reunited with his father, Al, Jimi convinced Hendrix senior to buy him his first stringed instruments. From there Jimi made many failed attempts at success in the music business. He suffered on the chitlin’ circuit as a sideman and was never able to get traction for his own bands in the United States. However, once he met Bryan “Chas” Chandler (bass player for the Animals) and the pair traveled together to England, Jimi quickly conquered the musical world.

Although Jimi lived a far-too-short twenty-seven years, his level of importance during his life and his influence in death is difficult to overstate. He was one of the original guitar gods whose name was mentioned during his life in the same sentences with Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, and Pete Townshend. His ability to synthesize musical styles was also a thing of legend. As he was reared on American blues and R&B, he was able to adapt these styles and infuse them with the more modern current of sixties psychedelia.

Jimi often chose to let his guitar playing speak for him with the vocals and the guitar line always vying for center stage—and the guitar typically winning. With that, Jimi’s guitar playing became the thing of legend that guitar players since have been trying to achieve or even imitate. However,

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The Words and Music of Jimi Hendrix
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Series Foreword ix
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • Introduction xiii
  • 1- The Early Years- Teeth Cutting and Life as a Sideman 1
  • 2- Overnight Success (1966–1967) 9
  • 3- Taking Control (Fall 1967–1969) 27
  • 4- New Horizons 55
  • 5- The Gypsys- Part II 63
  • 6- The "New" Jimi Hendrix Experience 73
  • 7- Jimi Lives on- Selected Posthumous Albums 85
  • 8 - More and More- The Douglas Releases, Dolly Dagger Records, and More Modern Releases 99
  • 9- The Legacy of Jimi Hendrix- Merchandizing a Legend and Control 125
  • Tours and Jam Sessions 133
  • Selected Discography 155
  • Notes 179
  • Bibliography 197
  • Index 201
  • About the Author 208
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