Miami Pop Festival Another Fitting Tribute To Hendrix’s Legacy

Courtesy:  Sony Legacy/Experience Hendrix, LLC

Courtesy: Sony Legacy/Experience Hendrix, LLC

November 27th, 1942 is one of the most important dates in modern music history.  It is such an important date because that was the day on which one of the greatest guitarists in modern music history was born.  His name was Jimi Hendrix.  If he were still around today, this November would mark his seventy-first birthday.  In honor of the upcoming anniversary, Sony Legacy and Experience Hendrix, LLC will release the never before released live recording, Jimi Hendrix Experience: Miami Pop Festival on November 5th.  This latest live release is another welcome addition to the home library of any true purist Hendrix fan.  Fans will appreciate and enjoy this latest live release first and foremost because as any fan knows, Hendrix and his band mates never played the same song the same way twice.  This was the case both in The Jimi Hendrix Experience and Band of Gypsys.  And that holds true even in the case of this release.  Audiences will also take note that in this performance, they get Hendrix’s very first ever recorded live performance of ‘Hear My Train A Comin’’ and ‘Tax Free.’  And sealing the deal for fans is the fact that as old as the performance is, the sound quality is just as good as any live recording released today.  The sound quality combined with the set list and overall performance makes this recording one that is deserving of many more than just one listen.

Anyone purist Hendrix fan knows that one thing that makes his live recordings so special is that he and his band mates never performed the same song the same way twice.  This applied both in the case of his performances with The Jimi Hendrix Experience and with his Band of Gypsys.  And it rings especially true on this recording.  Listeners will love how the band spontaneously breaks into jam sessions on every song.  One of the best of those moments comes in the band’s performance of ‘Red House.’  One can instantly see the band on stage, letting the music take over as it flows within the moment.  Drummer Mitch Mitchell’s playing is incredible to say the least.  Even throughout his performance in the band’s jam session here, he never misses a single beat.  And one can almost close one’s eyes and see Jimi, his own eyes closed as he lets the music flow from his fingertips.  This is a moment that is more than just part of concert.  It is part of a musical experience (pun fully intended).  It’s just one of so many moments that audiences will appreciate throughout this recording.

Hendrix and company offer so much enjoyment throughout The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Miami Pop Festival.  Listening to this new release is just as good as having been there.  The performance itself is just part of the equation, though.  Listeners get an extra special treat in this new live release that they’d never gotten in previous live Hendrix recordings.  That special treat is the inclusion of the first ever live recordings of ‘Hear My Train A Comin’ and ‘Tax Free.’  The first ever live recording of ‘Hear My Train A Comin’ is a wonderful musical experience.  It really served to exhibit Hendrix’s talent on the guitar.  The song’s old school blues roots come out so powerfully throughout the song, showing perfectly the connection between rock and the blues.  And again, Mitchell’s drumming perfectly complements Hendrix’s playing, while bassist Noel Redding maintains the songs foundation just as expertly.  ‘Tax Free’ by contrast is something that simply has to be heard to be appreciated.  This song is a full on jam session.  There are no words here.  Just music.  And the music is incredible. It is a rock song.  But it is also a chance for the band members to show the extent of their talents.  And to say that each one is talented would be an understatement.  It is one more small portion of the whole that makes this recording a must for any fan of Jimi Hendrix or of real music with soul and substance.

The set list and overall performance presented by Jimi Hendrix and his band mates on this latest live release are both extremely impresses parts of the whole presentation.  There is one more aspect of this recording’s presentation to consider in its success.  That factor is its audio mix.  More than forty-five years have passed since this performance was originally recorded.  Considering how much time has passed, it’s incredible that the masters have stood the test of time so well.  Just as interesting to note is that they survived the transfer from tape to CD.  The sound on this recording is just as clear as if one were actually at the performance as it was happening.  That is a tribute to both those that transferred the show to CD and to the man originally responsible for putting the recording to tape, Hendrix’s friend and sound engineer Eddie Kramer.  Kramer handled his recording duties with the utmost expertise in this performance.  And it shows from start to finish.  No one part overpowers the other at any one point throughout the show.  This added to the mix puts the recording over the top and that much more worth picking up when it hits stores in November.  More information on this and other upcoming Hendrix recordings is available online at http://www.jimihendrix.com.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Hendrix LP Storms Billboard Charts In Its Debut

Courtesy:  Legacy Recordings

Courtesy: Legacy Recordings

The latest compilation of songs from Jimi Hendrix made a big splash in its debut.  People, Hell and Angels debuted on the Billboard 200 at #2 and the Billboard Hard Music Chart in the #1 spot.  It’s the highest charting Hendrix album since his landmark 1968 album, Electric Ladyland.  That album spent two weeks at number one that year.  The most previous compilation of Hendrix songs, Valleys of Neptune, also on Legacy Recordings, debuted and peaked at #4.

People, Hell and Angels’ #1 chart position comes thanks to combined sales of the record from both online and brick-and-mortar outlets.  The album’s lead single, ‘Somewhere’, has also gone to the #1 position, according to a segment of CBS’ CBS This Morning.  “Jimi Hendrix (born November 27th, 1942) died in 1970 at the age of 27,” said host Charlie Rose.  “But his influence on music continues to this day.  The album as a whole is considered an important part of any Hendrix fan’s library.  The album’s release has also triggered a resurgence in interest in the legendary guitarist’s other works.  The Best Of, South Saturn Delta, Are You Experienced, and Axis: Bold As Love have all moved up on the latest album charts as a result of the latest LP’s release. 

People, Hell and Angels has received high marks from across the music and entertainment industry.  NPR’s World Café will be showcased in a pair of hour-long broadcasts as well as on the Dan Akroyd-hosted radio series, “Elwood’s Bluesmobile.”  “Elwood’s Bluesmobile” is syndicated on 180 commercial radio stations across America, Canada, and the Armed Forces Network.  The album is available now in stores and online.  Fans can order it online through the official Jimi Hendrix website, http://www.jimihendrix.com.  Fans can also get news on the latest Jimi Hendrix releases and more on the official Jimi Hendrix website as well as the official Jimi Hendrix Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/ThejimiHendrixExperience.

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

New Hendrix LP Is One Of 2013’s Best New Releases

Courtesy:  Legacy Recordings

Courtesy: Legacy Recordings

Legacy Recordings and Experience Hendrix, Inc. have released in the new Jimi Hendrix album, People, Hell & Angels what is one of the best albums of 2013. This latest release from the vaults represents Hendrix in a never before heard manner. Audiences will best understand and appreciate this record by listening to its twelve total tracks for themselves. Whether one is a devotee of Hendrix’s work or not, most people know songs such as ‘Hey Joe’, ‘The Wind Cries Mary’ and his take on Bob Dylan’s ‘All Along The Watchtower.’ But few people have heard Hendrix as they will on this new release; even the most devoted of fans.

People, Hell & Angels represents Hendrix at a pivotal point in his career. Having made music with The Jimi Hendrix Experience for so long, Hendrix wanted to do something outside of his comfort zone. And this compilation of songs is the result. The album opens with a nice up-tempo piece in ‘Earth Blues.’ The fuzz effect that Hendrix uses in his guitar with this song is true retro. And his vocals are just as strong. One can easily close one’s eyes and see people dancing to this, bodies moving in time throughout its near four-minute run time. What’s really interesting about this song is its stripped down sound.  Compared the music that Hendrix had previously written in his career, this is quite a different sound.  It’s more of a funk style work.  And lyrically, one can only be led to believe that Hendrix was writing about a woman here.  And even as old as it is, it sounds like something that could have been included in the repertoire of so many of today’s garage rock bands.  Yet again, it’s proof of how far ahead of his time Hendrix was.

Just as impressive as the album’s opener is the take on this record of his song, ‘Hear My Train a Comin’.’  This song is without a doubt one of the highlights of this new album.  It exhibits not just Jimi’s talents as a guitarist but as a musician.  This song is pure blues at its best.  His musicianship here is equivalent to that of fellow blues great Stevie Ray Vaughan if not greater.  And while the song clocks in at less than six minutes, the guitar breaks throughout the song give Hendrix the opportunity to really shine along with his band mates Billy Cox and Buddy Miles, with whom he would later go on to record the landmark album, Band of Gypsys.  Noting that, it’s just one hint of the greatness that was to come.

Hendrix fans will appreciate the original take of ‘Hear My Train A Comin’ as it’s without a doubt one of the true highpoints of this album.  Though, it isn’t the album’s only high point.  As already noted, People, Hell & Angels shows Hendrix in a way never heard before.  And nowhere is this more evident than in the absolutely funky ‘Let Me Move You.’  Presented in this song is Hendrix playing alongside a saxophonist by the name of Lonnie Youngblood.  The relationship between Hendrix and Youngblood went way back, even before Jimi had been discovered by Chas Chandler in March 1969.  Jimi’s guitar styling here, Youngblood’s musicianship, and the vocals (supposedly by Youngblood, too) combine for a work that will leave any listener breathless and sweaty from dancing to its infectious grooves.  If ‘Hear my Train A Comin’’ is a high point to this new release, then ‘Let me Move You’ is the definitive high point of this LP.

‘Let Me Move You’ is the high point of People, Hell & Angels.  But even after its near seven-minute run ends, the enjoyment doesn’t end.  The second half of this album offers its own share of enjoyment.  A prime example of that is the instrumental ‘Easy Blues.’  This hard to find song was originally recorded for the long out of print 1981 album, Nine to the Universe.  After the raw energy of ‘Let me Move You’ and ‘Izabella’, this song makes for a great way for listeners to catch their breath while still enjoying some outstanding improve musicianship not only on the part of Jimi, but fellow band mates at the time, Billy Cox, Mitch Mitchell and then second guitarist Larry Lee.  It’s just one more example of the greatness of this music legend and his band mates throughout his career.  Of course it isn’t the end of things, either.  The album still offers no less than five more tracks for listeners to enjoy and select from as their favorite on an album that is one of the year’s best.  People, Hell & Angels will be available in stores and online Tuesday, March 5th.  Audiences will be able to order it online via Legacy Recordings’ online store at http://www.legacyrecordings.com/a/#/home/

To keep up with the all of the latest news surrounding every new Jimi Hendrix release, fans can online to the official Hendrix website and Facebook page at http://www.jimihendrix.com and http://www.facebook.com/TheJimiHendrixExperience

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.