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Jimi Hendrix Encyclopedia

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Events

April 12th, 1969

Spectrum, Philadelphia
With Fat Mattress

Set List:
Fire
Red House
Foxey Lady
I Don’t Live Today
Hear My Train A Comin’
Stone Free
Star Spangled Banner
Purple Haze
Voodoo Child (Slight Return)

Jimi Hendrix leads The Experience through a rousing performance at the Philadelphia Spectrum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on April 12, 1969.

Photo: Chris Jones / © Authentic Hendrix, LLC

Events

May 03rd, 1969

Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Canada
With Cat Mother & The All Night Newsboys

Set List:
Fire
Hear My Train A Comin’
Spanish Castle Magic
Red House
Foxey Lady
Purple Haze
Voodoo Child (Slight Return)

The Experience fly to Pearson International Airport in Toronto, Ontario and arrive at 9:30 a.m.. While checking through Canada Customs, one of the bags Hendrix offers to be searched contains what is believed to be an illicit substance. Hendrix is arrested and taken to Police Headquarters in downtown Toronto. He is later released on a $10,000 cash bail and required at a court appearance on May 5. After his release, The Experience book into the Four Seasons Hotel and then head directly to Maple Leaf Gardens where they prepare for an evening performance.

Jimi opened his show with greeting, “We want you to forget about today, about yesterday, and about tomorrow. Tonight we’re gonna create a whole new world,” The guitarist then launched into an incendiary rendition of “Fire.” Ritchie Yorke, who reviewed the performance for the May 4 issue of The Globe And Mail, was moved to write, “his guitar became the voice of the Rave New World. It screamed, hissed, and shrieked with the ferocity of a thousand dentist drills plunged into a single tooth.”

The evening’s performance also featured a superb version of “Spanish Castle Magic”, complete with touches of both “Third Stone From The Sun” and “Little Miss Lover” interwoven within the song’s extended instrumental break. Jimi also performed a rare, fascinating early live version of “Room Full Of Mirrors”.

Events

December 31st, 1969

Fillmore East, New York
Two Shows

Prior to their two concerts later that evening, Hendrix and his Band Of Gypsys held an afternoon sound check and rehearsal at the Fillmore East. Later that evening, before a sold out crowd of 2,639, Hendrix rang in the New Year and new decade with two unforgettable performances.

The evening’s festivities opened with a spirited set by the Voices Of East Harlem, an enthusiastic young gospel ensemble. With the anticipation of the sold out Fillmore audience heightened to fever pitch, Hendrix led his trio through a scintillating, seventy-five minute opening performance. None of the eleven songs presented had yet to grace an Experience album. In the place of signature songs like “Purple Haze” and “All Along The Watchtower” were confident renditions of “Izabella” and “Hear My Train A Comin’”.

At midnight, Kip Cohen, the venue’s master of ceremonies, rang in the new year and decade buffeted by Guy Lombardo’s “Auld Lang Syne”. Never one to be upstaged, Jimi and company greeted the joyous house with their own inspired reading of the holiday staple. For Amalie Rothschild, the Fillmore East’s house photographer, the experience was an unforgettable one. “Then there was the countdown at midnight. It was the countdown that was a real scream. We’re talking about the end of the Sixties. December 31, 1969 turning into January 1, 1970--.A new decade. This was significant. After all, we were living through it and we knew that the Sixties were the Sixties. We had this big countdown on the [Joshua White] light show screen with this big clock 10, 9, 8, 7, 6…and everybody is yelling together. Then the light show screen pulls up and everybody is on stage--all the crew and the musicians. Hendrix, who is now on stage, launches into this amazing rendition of ‘Auld Lang Syne’ and I filmed it [excerpts of Rothschild’s color film footage can be seen in the VHS/DVD Band Of Gypsys]. This was history in the making. You could not miss this. His performance was just so inspired. It was just terrific and I can’t find the words to describe it.”

The recordings which make up both Band Of Gypsys and its two disc sequel Live At The Fillmore East certainly bear out Rothschild’s remembrances. Jimi’s celebrated work with the Band Of Gypsys stands among his most impressive and lasting achievements.

After the show, Ian Dove of Record Mirror interviewed Jimi Hendrix for the January 10, 1970 edition of the British paper. Later that night, Hendrix retreated to The Café Caliph (previously known as The Café Au Go Go) in Greenwich Village where he joined The James Cotton Blues Band on stage for a jam.