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Subject: Re: Help on Jimi Hendrix ( 4 of 22 )
Posted by crumb100

Part II
However, The Animals’ bassist-turned-manager and producer Chas Chandler saw Hendrix and was so impressed that, in September 1966, he persuaded him to return with him to England. Chandler’s timing was impeccable -- The Beatles had ceased touring in favour of recording, and the UK scene was set for an extravagant new talent -- and he understood how to direct his new charge both visually (the white guitar and tie-dyed clothes looked totally new in the 60s) and musically, without in any way compromising him. While there was never anything contrived about Hendrix’s talent or style, there was still a need to fashion his image for maximum effect, and Chandler knew what would work. Even small touches such as suggesting that Hendrix should spell his name Jimi proved to be spectacularly astute. Chandler also encouraged Hendrix’s earliest attempts at songwriting.
The Jimi Hendrix Experience, formed with bass player Noel Redding and drummer Mitch Mitchell, quickly became a sensation in the British club circuit, but still failed to attract interest from a major label, despite the respect he drew from the contemporaries with whom Chandler had shrewdly arranged for Hendrix to mingle.

It was a new company, Track Records, part owned by The Who’s manager Kit Lambert, that snapped up the talent that the biggest fish of the recording world had overlooked. Work began quickly on the band’s first single, “Hey Joe” (1967), which, along with the subsequent “Purple Haze”, managed to capture the bright essence of the shows which were electrifying audiences throughout the land. But it soon became clear that Hendrix also had an affinity with the growing sophistication of studio techniques, even if his experimentation with overdubbing on the debut album ARE YOU EXPERIENCED? (1967) almost went unnoticed in the excitement surrounding the release of The Beatles’ SGT PEPPER just three weeks later. Equally importantly, Hendrix’s assimilation of his various influences placed an unmistakable stamp on EXPERIENCED?: “Can You See Me” was reminiscent of a Yardbirds number; “Love Or Confusion” sounded like an extract from The Beatles’ REVOLVER; and “Remember” evoked Otis Redding.
Fuelled by their success in England, it was time for The Experience to take on America, where they made their explosive debut at the Monterey Festival in June 1967. Although they were billed to appear immediately after The Who, Hendrix was determined not to be upstaged, and finished his set by spraying his guitar with lighter fluid and incinerating it. The gesture shot him to overnight fame, even if part of his audience felt uneasy with the flamboyance.

After Monterey the pace became frenetic: with limited radio play and low singles sales, The Experience’s live work was still the best source of revenue, and so they toured incessantly to fund Hendrix’s vision of more complex albums. AXIS: BOLD AS LOVE (1968) was clearly more of a ‘studio’ album than its predecessor, encompassing intricately crafted songs like the classic “Little Wing”, as well as a great deal of experimental electronic effects. The double LP ELECTRIC LADYLAND, released in October 1968, represented a further progression in technique and innovation, but its release came as The Experience fell apart. Chandler, decreasingly influential as Hendrix’s success grew, had departed in September 1968, and relationships between the trio had reached breaking point. Redding quit when Hendrix suggested expanding the line-up -- a rather insensitive move by Hendrix, demonstrating how much he missed the guidance of Chandler.
Hendrix asked an old friend, Billy Cox, to be Redding’s replacement and used the opportunity to jam extensively with a diversity of musicians. It was this new incarnation, tentatively called Gypsies Suns And Rainbows and featuring extra percussion, keyboards and a second guitar, which accompanied him on stage at Woodstock. Hendrix, as ever, performed with total commitment -- “The Star Spangled Banner” was for many fans the greatest single moment of his career -- but the band was underrehearsed and, lacking cohesion and direction, lasted only a few months.

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