Jimi Hendrix Encyclopedia
December 14th, 1969
Just months after leaving the Experience to front Fat Mattress, Noel Redding’s group was coming undone. Rolling Stone magazine was among the first to reveal the group’s undoing.
“Despite reports to the contrary, Noel Redding’s Fat Mattress was not breaking up. Redding became ill during the group’s million-dollar American tour. In a statement from the Robert Stigwood Organization (Fat Mattress’s management company) said, “Fat Mattress’s debut tour of America has been postponed because of lead guitarist Noel Redding’s sudden illness.” Chas Chandler, the group’s manager strongly denied all rumors pointing the groups split saying “Noel flew home from New York after consulting his doctor and Rik Grunnell, head of the Stigwood office in the States. Noel will be taking a complete rest over the Christmas holiday at a secret address. New plans for Fat Mattress will be put into operation and announced in January.”
February 04th, 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, Mitch Mitchell and Noel Redding (who was recently brought in from England). Jeffery clearly wanted to present the original Jimi Hendrix Experience as a united group and that the disastrous Madison Square Garden performance by Hendrix with the Band Of Gypsys was a single, isolated episode. Rolling Stone was at the forefront of the counter cultural press and Jeffrey desperately wanted to the benefit of positive coverage for his artist.
In his interview, Burks made several attempts to pin Hendrix down on his present musical course, but Hendrix offered no definitive explanation or plan. Rather than lay out a comprehensive plan for the Experience, Hendrix alluded to possible future jamming and recording with Cox and Miles. The guitarist also described the recent Madison Square Garden performance as ‘the end of a big fairy tale’.