Jimi Hendrix

James Marshall "Jimi" Hendrix (Johnny Allen Hendrix) born on November 27, 1942, in Seattle, Washington, the first of five children to James Allen "Al" Hendrix and Lucille Jeter.

Hendrix had two brothers, Leon and Joseph, and two sisters, Kathy and Pamela. Joseph was born with physical difficulties and was placed in foster care at age three. His two sisters were also both placed in foster care at a young age. Kathy was born blind and Pamela suffered lesser physical difficulties.

Hendrix was particularly fond of Elvis Presley, whom he saw perform in Seattle, in 1957. Leon Hendrix claimed in an early interview that Little Richard appeared in his Central District neighborhood and shook hands with his brother, Jimi. This is unattested elsewhere and vehemently denied by his father. Hendrix's early exposure to blues music came from listening to records by Muddy Waters and B.B. King which his father owned. Another early impression came from the 1954 western Johnny Guitar, in which the hero carries no gun but instead wears a guitar slung behind his back.

His first gig was with an unnamed band in the basement of a synagogue, Seattle's Temple De Hirsch. After too much wild playing and showing off, he was fired between sets. The first formal band he played in was The Velvetones, who performed regularly at the Yesler Terrace Neighborhood House without pay. He later joined the Rocking Kings, who played professionally at such venues as the Birdland. When his guitar was stolen (after he left it backstage overnight), Al bought him a white Silvertone Danelectro. He painted it red and had "Betty Jean" emblazoned on it (the name of his high school girlfriend)

He completed junior high at Washington Junior High School with little trouble but did not graduate from Garfield High School. Later he was awarded an honorary diploma, and in the 1990s a bust of him was placed in the school library. After he became famous in the late 1960s, Hendrix told reporters that he had been expelled from Garfield by racist faculty for holding hands with a white girlfriend in study hall. Principal Frank Hanawalt says that it was simply due to poor grades and attendance problems.

He was given a choice between spending two years in prison or joining the Army after he caught by the law twice for riding in stolen cars. Hendrix chose the latter and enlisted on May 31, 1961. After completing basic training, he was assigned to the 101st Airborne Division and stationed in Fort Campbell, Kentucky. His commanding officers and fellow soldiers considered him to be a subpar soldier: he slept while on duty, had little regard for regulations, required constant supervision, and showed no skill as a marksman. For these reasons, his commanding officers submitted a request that Hendrix be discharged from the military after he had served only one year. Hendrix did not object when the opportunity to leave arose. He would later tell reporters that he received a medical discharge after breaking his ankle during his 26th parachute jump. The rock music journalist Charles Cross contended in his biography of Hendrix, Room Full of Mirrors (2005) that Hendrix faked being homosexual—claiming to have fallen in love with a fellow soldier—in order to be discharged, but did not produce credible evidence to support this contention.

Then he met fellow soldier and bass player Billy Cox, and the two forged a loyal friendship that Hendrix would call upon from April 1969 until Billy's breakdown shortly before Hendrix's death. The two would often perform with other musicians at venues both on and off the base as a loosely organized band there named the Casuals. As a celebrity in the UK, Hendrix mentioned his military service in three published interviews; one in 1967 for the film See My Music Talking (much later released under the title Experience), which was intended for TV to promote his recently released Axis: Bold as Love LP, in which he spoke very briefly of his first parachuting experience: "...once you get out there everything is so quiet, all you hear is the breezes-s-s-s..." This comment has later been used to claim that he was saying that this was one of the sources of his "spacy" guitar sound. The second and third mentions of his military experience were in interviews for Melody Maker in 1967 and 1969, where he spoke of his dislike of the army. In interviews in the US, Hendrix almost never mentioned it, and when Dick Cavett brought it up in his TV interview, Hendrix's only response was to verify that he had been based at Fort Campbell.

Early in 1966 at the Cheetah Club on Broadway at 53rd Street, Linda Keith, the girlfriend of Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards, befriended Hendrix and recommended him to Stones' manager Andrew Loog Oldham and later, producer Seymour Stein. Neither man took a liking to Hendrix's music, and they both passed. She then referred Hendrix to Chas Chandler, who was ending his tenure as bassist in The Animals and looking for talent to manage and produce. Chandler liked the song "Hey Joe" and was convinced he could create a hit single with the right artist.

Impressed with Hendrix's version, Chandler brought him to London and signed him to a management and production contract with himself and ex-Animals manager Michael Jeffery. It was Chandler who came up with the spelling change of "Jimmy" to "Jimi". Chandler then helped Hendrix form a new band, The Jimi Hendrix Experience, with guitarist-turned-bassist Noel Redding and drummer Mitch Mitchell, both English musicians. Shortly before the Experience was formed, Chandler introduced Hendrix to Pete Townshend and to Eric Clapton, who had only recently helped put together Cream. At Chandler's request, Cream let Hendrix join them on stage for a jam on the song "Killing Floor". Hendrix and Clapton remained friends up until Hendrix's death. The first night he arrived in London, he began a relationship with Kathy Etchingham that lasted until February 1969. She later wrote a well received autobiographical book about their relationship and the sixties London scene in general.

Hendrix sometimes had a camp sense of humor, specifically with the song "Purple Haze". A mondegreen had appeared, in which the line "'Scuse me while I kiss the sky" was misheard as "'Scuse me while I kiss this guy." In a few performances, Hendrix humorously used this, deliberately singing "kiss this guy" while pointing to Mitch or Noel, as he did at Monterey. In the Woodstock DVD he deliberately points to the sky at this point, to make it clear. A volume of misheard lyrics has been published, using this mondegreen itself as the title, with Hendrix on the cover.

After a year based in the US, Hendrix temporarily moved back to London and into his girlfriend Kathy Etchingham's rented Brook Street flat, next door to the Handel House Museum, in the West End of London. During this time The Jimi Hendrix Experience toured Scandinavia, Germany, and included a final French concert. They later performed two sold-out concerts at London's Royal Albert Hall on February 18 and February 24, 1969, which were the last European appearances of this line-up of the "Jimi Hendrix Experience". A Gold and Goldstein-produced film titled Experience  was also recorded at these two shows, which, according to Experience Hendrix LLC, "Elements of these recordings are sure to be utilized when the official release of this material is finally made."

Noel Redding felt increasingly frustrated by the fact that he was not playing his original and favored instrument, the guitar. In 1968, he decided to form his own band, Fat Mattress, which would sometimes open for the Experience (Hendrix would jokingly refer to them as "Thin Pillow"). Redding and Hendrix would begin seeing less and less of each other, which also had an effect in the studio, with Hendrix playing many of the bass parts on Electric Ladyland.

Fruitless recording sessions at Olympic in London; Olmstead and the Record Plant in New York that ended on April 9, which only produced a remake of Stone Free for a possible single release, were the last to feature Redding. Hendrix then flew Billy Cox to New York and started recording and rehearsing with him on April 21 as a replacement for Noel.

In a recorded interview by Nancy Carter on June 15 at his hotel in Los Angeles, Hendrix announced that he had been recording with Cox and that he would be replacing Noel as bass player in "The Jimi Hendrix Experience".

The last Experience concert took place on June 29, 1969 at Barry Fey's Denver Pop Festival, a three-day event held at Denver's Mile High Stadium that was marked by police firing tear gas into the audience as they played "Voodoo Chile (Slight Return)". The band escaped from the venue in the back of a rental truck which was partly crushed by fans trying to escape the tear gas. The next day, Noel Redding announced that he had quit the Experience.

Hendrix is widely known for and associated with the use of psychedelic drugs, most notably lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), as were many other famous musicians and celebrities of that time. He supposedly had never taken psychedelic drugs until the night he met Linda Keith, but smoked cannabis and drank alcohol previously. Amphetamines are also recorded as being used by Hendrix during tours. Hendrix was notorious among friends and bandmates for sometimes becoming angry and violent when he drank too much alcohol. Kathy Etchingham spoke of an incident that took place in a London pub in which an intoxicated Hendrix beat her with a public telephone handset because he thought she was calling another man on the pay phone.  Carmen Borrero, another girlfriend, says she required stitches after he hit her with a bottle after drinking and becoming jealous.[124]  Alcohol was also cited as the cause of Hendrix's 1968 rampage that badly damaged a Stockholm hotel room and led to his arrest. Paul Caruso's friendship with Hendrix ended in 1970 when Hendrix, while under the influence, punched him and accused him of stealing from him.

On May 3, 1969, while checking through Canadian customs at Toronto Pearson International Airport, Hendrix was arrested when small amounts of heroin and hashish were found in his luggage. After being released on a $10,000 cash bail the same day, only four hours before his show was to begin, (and being required to appear in court at a later date), the Experience were able to play their concert at Maple Leaf Gardens.

In his trial defense, Hendrix claimed that the drugs were slipped into his bag by a fan without his knowledge. He was acquitted.

Early on September 18, 1970, Jimi Hendrix died in London. He had spent the latter part of the previous evening at a party and was picked up by girlfriend Monika Dannemann and driven to her flat at the Samarkand Hotel, 22 Lansdowne Crescent, Notting Hill. According to the estimated time of death, from autopsy data and statements by friends about the evening of September 17, he died within a few hours after midnight, though no precise estimate was made at the original inquest.

Dannemann claimed in her original testimony that after they returned to her lodgings the evening before, Hendrix, unknown to her, had taken nine of her prescribed Vesperax sleeping pills. The normal medical dose was half a tablet, but Hendrix was unfamiliar with this very strong German brand. According to surgeon John Bannister, the doctor who initially attended to him, Hendrix had asphyxiated in his own vomit, mainly red wine which had filled his airways, as the autopsy was to show. For years, Dannemann publicly claimed that she had only discovered that her lover was unconscious and unresponsive sometime after 9 a.m., that Hendrix was alive when placed in the back of the ambulance after half past eleven, and that she rode with him on the way to the hospital; the latter two are denied by the ambulance crew. However, Dannemann's comments about that morning were often contradictory, varying from interview to interview. Police and ambulance statements reveal that there was no one but Hendrix in the flat when they arrived at 11:27 a.m., and not only was he dead when they arrived on the scene, but was fully clothed and had been dead for some time.

Later, Dannemen claimed that former road managers Gerry Stickels and Eric Barrett had been present before the ambulance was called and had removed some of Hendrix's possessions, including some of his most recent messages. Lyrics written by Hendrix, which were found in the apartment, led Eric Burdon to make a premature announcement on the BBC-TV program 24 Hours that he believed Hendrix had committed suicide. Burdon often claimed he had been telephoned by Dannemann after she discovered that Jimi failed to wake up.

Following a libel case brought in 1996 by Hendrix's long-term English girlfriend Kathy Etchingham, Monika Dannemann committed suicide.

Here some album collections

West Coast Seattle Boy (2010) The Jimi Hendrix Anthology

Blues (2010)
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