Jimi Hendrix Encyclopedia

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January 01, 1970

Having just successfully completed two sold out performances at the Fillmore East, the previous night, the Band of Gypsys New Year’s Day performances were solidifying them as one of the most recognizable sounds in modern music. Just as with the two shows the preceding night Wally Heider and Eddie Kramer also recorded this performance. The results of which have been released as Band Of Gypsys (Experience Hendrix/Capitol Records, 93446-2) and Hendrix: Live At The Fillmore East (Experience Hendrix/MCA, MCAD2-1111931).

As the Band Of Gypsys hit the stage the crowd explodes into applause as the three neighborly musicians break into a barrage of musical attacks, bouncing melodic beats of musical affection off each other. The mesmerizing opening statements of the newly formed Band of Gypsys implanted a new brand of funky rock-inspired blues in the audience’s head.

“His playing is so loud, so fluid and so rife with electronic distortions that it resembles that of no other currently popular performer,” reported Mike Jahn for The New York Times (January 2, 1970). Lead guitarist Jimi Hendrix was once again joined on stage by bassist, Billy Cox and drummer, Buddy Miles for their new collaboration of roaming and experimental sounds.

The Band Of Gypsys first set featured performances of “Who Knows,” “Machine Gun,” “Changes,” “Power Of Soul,” “Stepping Stone,” “Foxey Lady,” “Stop,” “Hear My Train A Comin’,” “Earth Blues,” and “Burning Desire.”

As Rolling Stones’ Loraine Alterman reported, “at the first show on New Year’s Day, the audience really let loose with cheers only on the old “Foxey Lady.” In all fairness, however, his second show reportedly went over much better especially when he and Miles sand a pleas for unity about how we’ve all got to live together, a song did together in a jam at the Newport ’69 festival in Los Angeles.

“In the end, though, Hendrix is a musician, not a contortionist or juggler. If the fans can forget the visual show and if Hendrix can come up with a new approach to material for a Band Of Gypsys, he’ll remain a heavy on the scene.”

After a brief intermission the Band Of Gypsys returned for a second set highlighted with “Stone Free,” “Little Drummer Boy,” “Power Of Soul,” “Changes,” “Message To Love,” “Earth Blues,” “Machine Gun,” “Voodoo Child (Slight Return),” “We Gotta Live Together,” “Wild Thing,” “Hey Joe,” and “Purple Haze.”

Alfred Aronowitz of The New York Post interviews Hendrix for a piece in the January 2, 1970 edition. Inside Aronowitz explains Hendrix’s musical change saying, “Jimi had chosen the New Year, and as he put it, the new decade to unveil his new trio… What’s the reason for the change? ‘Earth, man, earth,’ Jimi said. With his old group, The Jimi Hendrix Experience, the music has been too far out in space. ‘Now I want to bring it down to earth,’ Jimi said. ‘I want to get back to the blues, because that’s what I am.’ The new group has a new repertoire, but during his first set last night, Jimi was still waving his freak flag.

“There had been plans for Jimi to go back on tour with The Experience accompanied once again by Mitch Mitchell on drums and Noel Redding on bass, but after the show Jimi had changed his mind. ‘With Mitch, maybe, but not with Noel, for sure.’ He said. ‘That’s another thing. This is more of a real thing. We’re trying to get it on its feet. We’re waiting for Stevie Winwood. If I can get ahold of him and he agrees to it, that’ll be another voice. We’ll have harmony for days.’ The name of Jimi’s new group, incidentally, is A Band Of Gypsys. ‘That’s what we are,’ said Buddy. ‘That’s what all musicians are, Gypsies.'”

1970 Alfred Aronowitz Band of Gypsys Changes Earth Blues eddie kramer Fillmore East hey joe jan January 1 Little Drummer Boy Live Machine Gun Message To Love new years day performance Power Of Soul Purple Haze Stone Free The New York Post Voodoo Child (Slight Return) Wally Heider We Gotta Live Together Wild Thing

January 07, 1970

Hendrix returned to the Record Plant (321 West 44th Street, New York City) for a studio session that resulted in three takes of “I’m A Man,” (AKA “Stepping Stone”) and one take of “Cherokee Mist” being put to tape. Take three of “I’m A Man” resulted in the basic track that would be revisited again during the session on January 20.

1970 Cherokee Mist hendrix records I’m A Man January 20 january 7 New York City Recording tepping Stone the Record Plant

January 07, 1970

The February 7 edition of Rolling Stone took a candid look at the year that was… 1969. And in top marks to Jimi Hendrix, RS said, “Jimi Hendrix had a big year, a pretty neat trick for a musician who made no music. He was busted for dope and got off, his Experience broke up with Hendrix starting a “serious” new experimental group, he quite gigging except for a few festivals, and there were no new records. To Jimi Hendrix, the No News Is Big News Award.”

1970 Experience break up jan january 7 Media No News Is Big News Award Rolling Stone

January 16, 1970

In a session at the Record Plant, overseen by engineer Bob Hughes and second engineer Dave Ragno, Hendrix crafted a rough sketch of “Send My Love To Linda” which featured Miles on drums and Cox on bass. As the track progressed it extended into a lively extended jam. Additionally, twelve takes of “Paper Airplanes” (AKA “Power Of Soul”) and five takes of “Burning Desire” were also put to tape.

1970 billy cox Bob Hughes Buddy Miles Burning Desire Dave Ragno January 16 Paper Airplanes Power Of Soul Record Plant Recording Send My Love To Linda

January 19, 1970

Returning to the Record Plant Hendrix begins experimenting with different backward guitar effects. This session also saw additional work on “Burning Desire” but with little noticeable advancement on finalizing a basic track.

1970 Burning Desire January 19 Record Plant Recording

January 20, 1970

Revisiting the December 19 recording of “Message To Love,” during an evening session back at the Record Plant, the group completed the final overdubs for this track while Hendrix added a new lead guitar part to the master. The group also revisited “Earth Blues” (Take 11) from the same December 19 session – adding a series of overdubs and a new lead guitar track.

In revisiting take three of “I’m A Man” (January 7), Hendrix retitled the track “Sky Blues Today” while adding new guitar overdubs to the recording. Hendrix also revisited the December 18 recording of “Ezy Ryder.” Rough mixes for each of the session’s recordings were also completed, which would later be revisited at Electric Lady Studios later that summer.

1970 December 19 Earth Blues Electric Lady Studios Ezy Ryder I’m A Man January 20 Message To Love overdubslead guitar track Recording Sky Blues Today Take 11 the Record Plant

January 21, 1970

Another marathon session at the Record Plant took place on this night with fourteen takes of “Power Of Soul” (still referred under the working title of “Crash Landing”) put to tape, and although takes 2, 4, and 6 were complete, no master track was flagged. Hendrix the introduced six takes of “Astro Man” before closing the session with one uneventful take of “Valleys Of Neptune.”

In 1974, Alan Douglas pulled the fourth (and complete) take of “Power Of Soul” and included it on the dismal collection Crash Landing (Reprise Records, MS 2204) albeit remixed and overdubbed with percussion by Jimmy Maeulen and subsequently retitled as “With The Power.”

The January 21 issue of Variety magazine announces the upcoming Isle Of Wight Festival of Music – a five-day musical extravaganza slated for August 30 on the small island off the south coast of England. Of the event, Variety explains, “the first two days will be a film fest. It is hoped to premier a couple of films of the Easy Rider genre. The remainder will be a conventional progressive pop bash with about 30 acts taking part. Policy is to not book more than two big names as crowd pullers as they tend to overshadow other acts. No bookings have yet been made.”

1970 1974 Alan Douglas Astro Man Crash Landing January 21 Jimmy Maeulen overdubbed Power Of Soul Recording the Record Plant Valleys Of Neptune Variety magazine With The Power

January 22, 1970

Back at the Record Plant, rough mixes of “Sky Blues Today” and “Izabella” were prepared but later scrapped in favor of new ones.

1970 Izabella January 22 Recording rough mixes Sky Blues Today the Record Plant

January 23, 1970

With Bob Hughes and Dave Ragno monitoring the control desk, Hendrix guided the band through lively renditions of “Villanova Junction Blues” including one take lasting in excess of fifteen minutes. Several extended jams were recorded on this evening including “MLK,” “Slow Time Blues,” and “Burning Desire.”

Later joined by an unidentified harp player, Hendrix leads the session through another extended track, this time Carl Perkins’ “Blue Suede Shoes.” Joined by Billy Cox, Hendrix also dabbled around “Freedom” and “Highways Of Desire” the later which gradually segued into “Seven Dollars In My Pocket.”

Following the blues groove already set in place, Hendrix then began to tackle “Midnight Lightning,” “Freedom,” “Country Blues,” and “Once I Had A Woman.” In 1974, an edited take of “Once I Had A Woman” featuring overdubbed harmonica parts by Buddy Lucas was prepped for 1975’s compilation Midnight Lightning (Reprise Records, MS 2229). An extended rendition was also later included on 1994’s Jimi Hendrix :Blues (Experience Hendrix/MCA, MCAD-11060).

1970 billy cox Blue Suede Shoes Bob Hughes Burning Desire Carl Perkins Country Blues Dave Ragno Freedom Highways Of Desire January 23 MLK Once I Had A Woman Recording Slow Time Blues Villanova Junction Blues

January 28, 1970

Billed as the “Winter Festival For Peace,” Peter Yarrow (Peter, Paul & Mary) and Sid Bernstein, event producers, announced that their services would be donated and that all proceeds of the event will go to the Vietnam Moratorium effort. The five-hour festival slated from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. will feature Harry Belafonte; Blood, Sweat & Tears; Dave Brubeck; Richie Havens; Mother Earth; Peter, Paul & Mary; The Rascals; The Cast of Hair; Judy Collins, and Jimi Hendrix & his Band Of Gypsys.

Suffering from exhaustion and the effects of a drink laced with an unknown substance taken before the show, Hendrix failed to execute his musical plans this evening. Having completed just two songs, “Who Knows” and “Earth Blues” the only thing Hendrix could do at that point was drop his guitar and sit down on the stage, meanwhile Miles and Cox continue to roll through the back beats. As Alfred Aronowitz later recalled in his New York Post column, “The crowd has already gotten twice its money’s worth when Jimi Hendrix stopped playing in the middle of his second number, said ‘That’s what happens when Earth ***** with Space, never forget that, that’s what happens.'” … “Jimi got up, put his guitar down and walked offstage.”

“When he came off stage,” explained Alan Douglas “he actually fell off the apron. At first I thought he was hurt, but he wasn’t. I then ran backstage to the dressing room to see if in fact he was okay. There he was sitting playing the guitar and smiling. I don’t know what went through his mind when he was on stage, but the first thing I noticed, it looked like he was having a big rhythm problem. I think he just got fed up.”

Backstage, Jimi meets Johnny Winter. In recounting the meeting Winter explains, “I saw Jimi backstage at the Madison Square Garden concert, the one where he just couldn’t play. When I saw him, it have me chills. It was the most horrible thing I’d ever seen. He came in with this entourage of people, and it was like he was already dead. He just walked in – and even though Jimi and I weren’t the greatest of friends, we always talked, always – and he came in with his head down, sat on the couch alone, and put his head in his hands. He didn’t say a word to anybody, and no one spoke to him. He didn’t move until it was time for the show. He really wanted to do that gig, but he never should have. It wasn’t that it was bad, but his whole thing was inspiration, and there wasn’t any. It was just completely uninspired; finally, right in the middle of a song, he just took his guitar off, sat on the stage – the band was still playing – and told the audience, “I’m sorry, we just can’t get it together.” One of his people said he was sick, and lead him off stage. He was just so unhappy that there was no way that he could play the show. It didn’t have anything to do with the group – he had already died!”

1970 Band of Gypsys Blood Dave Brubeck eter Events Harry Belafonte January 28 Jimi Hendrix Johnny Winte Judy Collins Madison Square Garden Mother Earth. Paul & Mary Peter Yarrow Richie Havens Sid Bernstein Sweat & Tears The Cast of Hair The Rascals Vietnam Moratorium Winter Festival For Peace

February 02, 1970

While Hendrix and Eddie Kramer were taking a break from a mixing session for Band Of Gypsys at New York’s Juggy Sound, Jimi joins Rosicrucians, a Queens-based band that Kramer was producing, for a casual jam session.

1970 Band of Gypsys casual jam session eddie kramer February 2 Live New York's Juggy Sound Rosicrucians

February 03, 1970

Rough mixes of the January 21 cuts of “Power Of Soul” was prepared.

1970 February 3 Power Of Soul Recording

February 04, 1970

Under the watchful eye of manager, Michael Jeffery Rolling Stone’s John Burks was invited to Jeffery’s office on West 37th Street in New York to interview Hendrix, Mitchell and Redding (whom was recently brought in from England), in a carefully controlled environment. Wanting the trio to appear as a united force that was to again be known as The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Jeffrey pressed to get positive press coverage in the pages of Rolling Stone.

During the interview Hendrix is asked several questions about his evolving music direction where he eludes to expanded musical offerings. Have you given any thought to touring with the Experience as the basic unit, but bringing along other people? Or would that be too confusing?

No, it shouldn’t be. Maybe I’m the evil one, right [laughs]. But there isn’t any reason for it to be like that. I even want the name to be Experience anyway, and still be this mish-mash moosh-mash between Madame Flipflop And Her Harmonite Social Workers.

It’s a nice name.

It’s a nice game. No, like about putting other groups on the tour, like our friends – I don’t know about that right now; not at a stage like this, because we’re in the process of getting our own thing together as far as a three piece group. But eventually, we have time on the side to play with friends. That’s why I’ll probably be jamming with Buddy [Miles] and Billy [Cox]; probably be recording, too, on the side, and they’ll be doing the same.

Do you every think in terms of going out with a dozen people?

I like Stevie Winwood; he’s one of those dozen people. But things don’t have to be official all the time. Things don’t have to be formal for jams and stuff. But I haven’t had a chance to get in contact with him.”

With Hendrix’s growing interest in Steve Winwood and a growing relationship with Billy Cox, it was clear in Hendrix’s mind that the original Experience group would never reform – he was right.

1970 February 4 interview Interviews John Burks Michael Jeffery Rolling Stone

February 11, 1970

During a mixing session for Band Of Gypsys at the Record Plant, Dave Ragno and Bob Hughes joined Hendrix for the completion of a rough mix of “Izabella.”

1970 Band of Gypsys Bob Hughes Dave Ragno february 11 Izabella Recording the Record Plant

February 12, 1970

Back at the Record Plant, additional rough mixes of “Izabella” plus “Sky Blues Today” were completed. The mix of “Izabella” was considered the master.

1970 february 12 Izabella Recording rough mixes Sky Blues Today the Record Plant

February 15, 1970

A master mix for “Sky Blues Today” was achieved during the session at the Records Plant. This master, coupled with “Izabella” from the session on the 12th would later be released (April 13, 1970) on the short-run single “Stepping Stone” b/w “Izabella” (Reprise Records, 0905)

1970 April 13 February 15 Izabella master mix Recording Reprise Records Sky Blues Today Stepping Stone the Records Plant

February 16, 1970

Buddy Miles and Juma Sultan join Hendrix at the Record Plant where two recordings of “Blue Suede Shoes” were put to tape. Later, Hendrix sung live, giving a beautiful flamenco-styled flavor to “Hey Baby (Land Of The New Rising Sun).” Afterwards Hendrix breaks into a jam playing “Summertime Blues” which is then followed by “Day Tripper.”

1970 Blue Suede Shoes Buddy Miles Day Tripper February 16 Hey Baby Juma Sultan Land Of The New Rising Sun Releases Summertime Blues the Record Plant

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