The 1960’s and 1970’s were without a doubt two of the most turbulent eras in America’s history. They were eras of political and social unres. By contast, they were also eras that created some of the greatest music in the country’s history, too. One of the greatest names in music in those days was a young man from Seattle, Washington by the name of Jimi Hendrix. His music epitomized the free expression of the time. It also captured the tensions of the times. Nowhere was this more evident than at his performance at the Berkeley Community Theater in Berkeley, California on Memorial Day, 1970.
The two concerts held that day were among the most important and impressive of Hendrix’s career. The footage of the unrest right outside the theater as Hendrix played was a complete juxtaposition of the vibe of togetherness inside the theater. His music became an escape for those in attendance as conflict brewed outside. That both shows sold out that day showed Hendrix’s influence; his ability to join people together for peace, love, and music, despite all the problems of the world. Just over forty-two years have passed since his performances that day. That the original footage from those shows has lasted so long is simply incredible. And thank goodness it did. It captured an important momtn both in music history and American history. Because it has been so well preserved, music lovers the world over can re-live these two shows on CD, DVD, Blu-ray, and even on double disc 200 gram vinyl.
The brand new release, “Jimi Plays Berkeley” is part of a bigger collection celebrating what would have been his 70th birthday later this year. If Jimi were alive today, it would have been one heck of a gift to him. Instead, it’s a gift to fans of his music, and music lovers in general. Being that over four decades have passed since these shows were originally recorded, audiences will be amazed at thequality of the video and audio transfer. Reading the included story of the journey made by the footage adds to the appreciation of the performances.
Those who pick up the blu-ray presentation of “Jimi Plays Berkeley” get more than just one amazing concert, speaking of footage. Included in the blu-ray set is the second set that is also available in CD only format. This is a big bonus for audiences. It allows them to choose whether they want the CD, the blu-ray, or even both. Even if fans pick up the DVD, they are still getting a performance that is not only one of 2012’s best live recordings, but also one of music’s greatest live shows. “Jimi Plays Berkeley” is available now in stores and at most online retailers.
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