Sunday, October 28, 2007

The Insanely Talented Jimi Hendrix

Jimi Hendrix saw music in color. Sadly, there isn't a ton of stuff on YouTube that does him justice. Most of it's badly filmed, has poor sound, or just isn't that great of a performance. This video from the BBC's Lulu Show in 1969 is the clear exception. Jimi and his band mates Mitch Mitchell and Noel Redding begin with a stratospheric Voodoo Child, and when the nice British announcer asks for their big hit, Hey Joe, he obliges her by totally screwing with the intro and rocking it for sixty seconds or so before he abruptly quits and does a quick little Cream tribute instead. Amazing. A talent too big to be contained by TV.

Redding's face kind of reminds me of the post-reconstruction Michael Jackson. My four-year-old doesn't believe me when I say he's a boy, And watch for the moment when Jimi smiles over at Mitchell as he drops the tuning on his lowest string for a little extra growl. Magic.

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